(Pocket-lint) - Online security has fast evolved from a geek-only topic to common chat, especially as tapping smartphones or smartwatches to pay is becoming a reality. So are you aware of what's secure and what's not?

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As part of a study the National Vulnerability Database (NVD) analysed operating systems and apps to find out which are the most open to attack. Guess who came out on top?

The operating system with the highest number of vulnerabilities in 2014 was Apple's Mac OS X followed in second place by it's own iOS. In third place came Linux Kernel with Microsoft's Server 2008 in fourth. The most recent Windows 8.1 was way down in eighth place on the list of ten.

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On the software front Microsoft didn't do so well with its Internet Explorer at the top of the list with 242 vulnerabilities. Second place with 124 vulnerabilities was Google Chrome followed by Mozilla's Firefox with 117. This varies quickly though with Firefox at the top for 2009 and 2012 but Chrome topping the list in 2010 and 2011.

So what does this mean for a Mac OS X user who works in Internet Explorer a lot? You're at risk but that's been the case for most Apple machines for years. It hasn't been a problem for most. But with the overall number of vulnerabilities in 2014 at 7,038 when there were 4,794 in 2013 it can't hurt to be aware and always be careful online.

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Writing by Luke Edwards.