Boot Camp security risk is just hype: Gartner

Any talk of Apple's Boot Camp software exposing the company's operating system to security risks is just hype and should be ignored, according to analyst firm Gartner.In an advisory published on Gartner's Web site last week, research vice-president Michael Silver said administrators should ignore any suggestions that Apple's move to Intel processors will expose the system to security vulnerabilities.

Any talk of Apple's Boot Camp software exposing the company's operating system to security risks is just hype and should be ignored, according to analyst firm Gartner.

In an advisory published on Gartner's Web site last week, research vice-president Michael Silver said administrators should ignore any suggestions that Apple's move to Intel processors will expose the system to security vulnerabilities.

"All users should ignore any hype about the possibility of exposing the Mac OS to more viruses or worms. The Mac software will be located on another partition within a different file system; thus, running Windows on a Mac will not expose the Mac software to more malware," wrote Silver.

However, if Boot Camp helps to increase the penetration of Apple's platform then OS X could attract the attention of cyber-criminals, he said.

"If Mac sales and Apple's market share increase, the Mac OS could potentially become a more attractive target for malware," said Silver.

Administrators may have to get up to speed with integrating OS X into their environment if companies allow their employees to purchase Mac systems using benefits such as salary sacrifice.

"Companies experimenting with requiring users to purchase their own PCs should expect more Macs to enter their environments," wrote Silver.

Microsoft could boost the penetration of Apple systems if it were to introduce more attractive licensing terms for Boot Camp users, according to the advisory.

Overall, Gartner does not believe Apple embracing Microsoft's operating system will have a noticeable effect on the desktop ecosystem: "Gartner does not believe that Boot Camp will make Macs significantly more attractive to enterprises outside of Apple's traditional strongholds in the graphic arts, video production, scientific research and education."

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