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Apple has delayed the deadline for developers to implement “sandboxing” in apps sold on the Mac App store until March next year.

The rule was set to come into force this month but Apple advised developers of the delay in a message sent last week.

Sandboxing – where code runs in isolation to protect other applications – is a “way to protect systems and users by limiting the resources apps can access and making it more difficult for malicious software to compromise users’ systems,” Apple said.

“The vast majority of Mac users have been free from malware and we’re working on technologies to help keep it that way,” the company said.

“As of March 1 2012, all apps submitted to the Mac App Store must implement sandboxing.”

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