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Which is Safer - Linux or W10 ?


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#1 dino2014

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Posted 06 February 2016 - 07:39 PM

In the past its been said that Linux was always safer than Windows, though now there are many AV and Firewall programs for Linux.

This recent Linux  AV report makes interesting reading

  https://www.av-test.org/en/pdfnews/253

 

While many love to hate Windows 10 is it really so much worse security wise, when there seems to be so many Windows  protection  suites etc out there to choose from ?

 

I would like to move away from Windows but is Linux really a safer option these days or is it almost an even score with Windows or worse! .. ?



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#2 Smsec

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Posted 07 February 2016 - 12:35 AM

Based on that article, I wouldn't be afraid to use Linux for a desktop. I assume that's what you're considering. 

 

This article focused on Linux servers and mentions botnets. I think they are mainly talking about Webservers hosting malware for botnets. Linux servers widely used for hosting websites where anyone can stand up a Wordpress or Joomla Content Management System (CMS )for $9.00 a month and never patch the CMS software. Eventually these out of date applications are found by bot   scans and infected to serve as phishing sites or host malware. It's not the Linux kernel that's getting infected but the software related to the web site hosting.

 

Windows servers are more often used in Corporate hosting where there's more attention to patching and maintenance.

 

As long as there's more people using Windows, there'll be more malware developed for it. Hacker's will put more effort where they can make the most money. A person using a Linux desktop who browses one of these sites hosting malware targeted at Winddows PC's is not going to get infected. 

 

I use both Windows and Linux. I'm not going to wade into the debate of which is more secure. Whatever OS a person chooses, it's important to stay up to date with the OS patches, the 3rd party app patches and use antivirus software. 



#3 buzzrobot

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Posted 07 February 2016 - 07:01 PM

1.  Malware is a business.  A criminal business, but still a business.  As long as the overwhelming majority of PC's run Windows, the overwhelming majority of malware attacks will target Windows.  Malware software developers write for Windows for the same reason that legitimate software developers write for Windows:  That's where they get the biggest return.

 

2. Security and privacy are different things.  While I think Windows 10 is, or can be if administered appropriately, a sufficiently secure system, it is not a private system. The integration of Cortana and other services requires the retention of tracking and usage data many find to be invasive, even if you choose all the opt-outs W10 offers.

 

3. AV software is typically used on Linux machines networked with Windows machines in an attempt to avoid relaying Windows viruses and malware via shared mail.  It's not useful to run an AV on a Linux system that isn't on a Windows network.  All the AV signatures will be for Windows viruses.

 

4.  Linux users are as vulnerable as anyone else to their own failings. If they fall for a phishing trap, or don't use an ad blocker and load a page with ad malware that targets, say, javascript and not specific Windows code, they can get into as much trouble as any Windows user.  But, the key here is that it's the users who are being targetted, and the users who are the security problem.


Edited by buzzrobot, 07 February 2016 - 07:05 PM.


#4 Smsec

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Posted 07 February 2016 - 08:29 PM

buzzrobot,

 

Well said! I agree.



#5 GataPandu

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Posted 07 February 2016 - 09:41 PM

I wonder what hardware/mobo specs will fully support W10 security features? (TPM 2.0 etc.)

 

Are there any such W10 boxes on the market already?



#6 Smsec

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 08:59 PM

Just stumbled across this article on security problems with Linux browsers and the Webkit updates or lack of: On WebKit Security Updates Due to the security update problem the author says "For general web browser use we recommend Iceweasel or Chromium."

 

Just like on Windows it's not just the OS security we need to be concerned with it's also the installed application.



#7 quietman7

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 09:34 PM

Traditionally malware has been ineffective against Linux and Apple Mac OS X because most malware has not been written to attack these operating systems. Linux and Apple Mac still occupy a very small share of the market when compared to the Windows platform. Malware writers prefer to write (design) malicious software which will attack and infect the widest audience range which currently is comprised of Windows users. However, there has been an increase in malware written to target Linux and Apple Mac OS X so they are not completely immune to exploits anymore.
 

...whenever someone states that linux or macs are more secure I laugh. You ever look at the monthly security updates for those operating systems? The reality is that the market base is too small and not worth their while. Not worth their time to target a much smaller base.

Grinler, BC Site Admin & Microsoft MCP: Post #2332.



...Windows, which is often referred to as the most vulnerable operating system in the world and also an easy pie for hackers, is not even listed on the top three vulnerable OS. According to an analysis by the network and security solutions provider GFI, the top three most vulnerable operating system are:

  • Apples Mac OS X
  • Apple iOS
  • Linux kernel

Windows? No, Linux and Mac OS X were the most vulnerable OS in 2014

 


 


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