Looks like Apple is previewing Mac OS 10.8: Mountain Lion. One really neat features they’re touting (but not in the consumer-y video of features) is Gatekeeper, which is essentially a way for developers to sign their apps and register responsibility and ownership of an app through Apple (i.e. as part of the Mac Developer Program).
This gives developers a way to bypass the Mac App Store, but still release apps on their own in a way that is verified by Apple. Sounds familiar, actually…this is Wil Shipley, from November, 2011:
My suggestion is for Apple to provide certificates directly to developers and allow the developers to sign their own code. And, by doing this, Apple can then reasonably say, “Ok, now we’re going to, by default, not allow the user to run any code whose certificate wasn’t issued by us and signed by a real third-party developer (except the stuff the user checks in the control panel).”
The panel Apple shows for controlling the app security settings isn’t as fine-grained as the one Wil Shipley mocked up, but all in all it’s almost a direct implementation of the concept. A win for developers, I think, and a great new security feature in Mac OS X. Hopefully it actually makes it into the shipping version of Mountain Lion.