The latest mi2g Intelligence Unit study analyzed 235,907 successful security breaches of continuously Web connected PCs worldwide. Of the nearly quarter million breaches carried out by hackers from November 2003 to October 2004, only 4.82% were against Mac OS X or BSD based online computers.
"More and more smart individuals, government agencies and corporations are shifting towards Apple and BSD environments in 2004," said DK Matai, Executive Chairman of mi2g. "There is an accelerating paradigm shift visible in 2004 and busy professionals have spotted the benefits of Apple and BSD because they donit have the time to cope with umpteen flavors of Linux or to wait for Microsoftis Longhorn when Windows XP has proved to be a stumbling block in some well chronicled instances."
The study revealed that Linux is now the number one most breached 24/7 online computing environment in terms of manual hacker attacks at 65.64%, with 154,846 successfully compromised computers. The number of successful manual hacker attacks against Microsoft Windows based online computers has remained steady and accounts for 25.19% of all breaches recorded, with 59,419 successfully compromised Windows targets of all versions.
The number of recorded breaches against government online computers running BSD or Mac OS X worldwide remains very low at 1.74%, the firm said.
In terms of global economic damage from hacker attacks, mi2g estimated the damage to have been between $103 billion and and $126 billion. These figures exclude malware attacks through viruses, worms and trojans which account for an additional estimated damage of between $166 billion and $202 billion worldwide.