Apple's clear success with iTunes and Mac OS X is making the company a legitimate target for online criminals, a report confirms.

The new report comes from the non-profit SANS Institute. It reveals that online criminals have "turned their attention to antivirus software and media players such as iTunes in the first three months of 2005", Reuters reports.

"As more Windows users agreed to receive security upgrades automatically, hackers looked to take advantage of other software programs that might not be patched as frequently," Reuters reports.

Software from Apple, Oracle, Real, Symantec, TrendMicro and McAfee is reportedly affected in a clear sign that users should prioritise security, particularly for personal data.