Linked by Amjith Ramanujam on Sat 19th Jul 2008 19:01 UTC, submitted by cypress
Linux Linux and UNIX-like operating systems in general are regarded as being more secure for the common user, in contrast with operating systems that have "Windows" as part of their name. Why is that? When entering a dispute on the subject with a Windows user, the most common argument he tries to feed me is that Windows is more widespread, and therefore, more vulnerable. Apart from amusing myths like "Linux is only for servers" or "does it have a word processor?", the issue of Linux desktop security is still seriously misunderstood.
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Comment by moleskine
by moleskine on Sat 19th Jul 2008 23:41 UTC
moleskine
Member since:
2005-11-05

Ho well, I run all my mail through my isp's checkers, so that removes one vector.

I turn off all unneeded daemons or services and sit behind a firewall. So that removes another vector.

All my programs come from the Debian ftp servers, so that removes a third vector. The problem with Windows programs is that you often have to obtain them from all over the place and many places are malware-laden. Providing you stick to properly run repositories and steer clear of cowboy operations, Linux is way ahead in this regard.

That leaves drive-by malware via my browser, mainly. I keep it up to date and run it from behind privoxy.

A lot of this stuff is common sense, imho. But yes, the use of divisions of privilege by way of ordinary user being quite separate from root or admin is a really key thing, imho. The problem is, no one's yet found a really painless way to do this. Running sudo can become such second nature, that I suspect a cleverly done social exploit that had the user typing "sudo ..." could get quite far on Linux simply because so many people use sudo all the time without thinking much about it. TBH, some distros almost encourage this.

I'm wary of the "Linux is more secure" stuff. It depends on the user .. and if it ever came to fending off a malware avalance on Linux, it would also depend on that little word "yet". We know how secure Linux is today, but the truth is none of us has much idea about tomorrow.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Comment by moleskine
by repvik on Sun 20th Jul 2008 01:15 in reply to "Comment by moleskine"
repvik Member since:
2005-07-04

Ho well, I run all my mail through my isp's checkers, so that removes one vector.

Saywhatnow? It reduces that vector, it does not remove it.

Reply Parent Score: 5