The Survey is closed and I had a whopping 28 total responses :)
The questions were
1. How often do you connect your iPhone to a computer with iTunes running?
2. Have you owned your iPhone for at least 6 months?
3. How did you learn of this survey?
Five people did not respond to the last question. One respondent uses an iPod Touch, which shares many of the same vulnerabilities that the iPhone has.
For question number 1:
17 (60.7%) connect at least once a week.
6 (21.4%) connect at least once a month.
3 (10.7%) connect at least once every two months.
2 7.1% connect less than once every 2 months.
Of the 5 people who have owned their iPhones for less than 6 months, only one reported connecting less than once a week, and that one person connected less than once every two months.
Only one or two of the respondents learned of the survey from a non-security related source, with almost all hearing of the survey from the ESET blog or an ESET tweet.
While I do not believe the sample set is statistically sound, it does match my expectations that readers of the blog are probably connecting often enough to get critical security updates. That said, if the numbers hold out for the general population, or if, as I suspect, the general population doesn’t connect as frequently, there could be significant problems with Apple’s approach to iPhone updates. If one doesn’t pay attention to security updates an iPhone worm could be viable. It would be a great idea for Apple, or their service providers, such as AT&T, to proactively notify users when they need to apply patches.
Director of Technical Education
Author ESET Research, We Live Security