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What Goes Around Comes Around

As Apple has notched the most successful sales of Mac computers in history, its head of software engineering, Craig Federighi, says attacks have risen as well. "Today, we have a level of malware on the Mac that we don't find acceptable," he said during testimony defending Apple in a lawsuit with Fortnite maker Epic Games in a California court.

Each week, Apple identifies a couple pieces of malware on its own or with help of third parties, Federighi added, and it uses built-in systems to automatically remove them from customers' computers. But, the malware can infect hundreds of thousands of computers before Apple stamps it out. Since last May, Federighi said, there have been 130 types of Mac malware, and one of them alone infected 300,000 systems.

Federighi said he believes Macs are still more secure than PCs, but he made clear that the Mac's facing a "significantly larger malware problem" than are iPhones, iPads and Apple's other devices. "It's an endless game of whack-a-mole."

Apple's choice to essentially attack the security of its own software may seem shocking after the company spent years criticizing competing PCs as insecure. But Apple's now defending its App Store for the iPhone and iPad in a California court, where Epic is asking a judge to force major change. The court is considering whether Apple should be allowed to wall off its phones and tablets, only allowing apps to be installed through its App Store. Epic says that Apple's approach is too restrictive and that competing technologies should be allowed onto its phones as well.

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