Apple Macintosh peripherals maker DVForge has cancelled a $25,000 (£13,900) challenge to hackers to write a virus against the Mac operating system after being warned by Apple it could encourage real attacks on users.
Angered by a claim by anti-virus company Symantec that the Mac operating system was increasingly prone to security exploits, DVForge issued the challenge to hackers on the internet.
The company claimed that Symantec and other security companies were scaremongering about the security of the Mac.
DVForge then connected two Macs running the OS X 10.3 Panther operating system and challenged hackers on the internet to try and write a virus that would spread from one Mac to another.
The $25,000 bounty would be doubled for any Symantec employee completing the task.
But Apple has persuaded DVForge to ditch the contest after becoming concerned that it could unleash a new tide of attacks on the Mac in the wild.
Apple now issues monthly security updates against vulnerabilities in its operating systems. This month Apple issued a patch that addressed 10 potential security holes.