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Hello, i am new here, i just signed up to research a few questions on Virus Protection / Anti-Viruses, this is a school power point project that it is due ...
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    Virus Protection \ Anti Virus


    Hello, i am new here, i just signed up to research a few questions on Virus Protection / Anti-Viruses, this is a school power point project that it is due next thursday, and i have wondering if i can get some overview of how Linux anti-virus is handled.

    I have read in some sites that anti-virus is not actually needed because there is a built in protector? or are hackers less likely to attack an Linux user because of its numbers? compared to Windows users.
    Thanks in advance.

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    When you look at web site attacks, Linux runs many times more than windows, and yet the attacks are againt windows servers. The fact that you have to know more to admin a Linux/Unix machine (the software does not assume that it knows what you desire and does what you tell it and normally there are not auto open applications based on files names (although many people do activate this on one user linux systems which will bite them given enough time)). I run with no auto run, no auto mounting of flash/dvd/harddrive that are connected to the machine. This means that I decide when to mount a device, when to run an application, etc. When a person is in control and understands the workings, things are not just done. Most windows users that I know will simply "click on OK" when a dialog pops up (I swear that they would this if the text said "Clicking okay will send off your information to me and that you have consented to allow me to use that information for my own personal gain or for any reason in any fashion." as they do not read them.) I have seen two people turn on firewall software and every time a dialog came up about the communication, they simply "clicked OK".

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    Super Moderator Roxoff's Avatar
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    Aye - alf is right. Linux hasn't been historically ignored at a virus target because of the numbers, it's been avoided because Windows was always such an easy hit.

    Linux has always been inherently less vulnerable because when user account is infected it can't propagate to the whole system because the user never has permissions to read/write the system areas. Windwos have fixed this massive security blunder in Vista/Win7 and later - but even then people turn the protection off.

    I've never heard of any cities that have built-in virus protection to their network services. Surely to filter stuff out of network communications to a whole city is a kind of censorship?

    I run Linux. I've never used a virus killer for it. My Windwos systems, of course, all run them.
    Linux user #126863 - see http://linuxcounter.net/

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    Penguin of trust elija's Avatar
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    I do run clam av as my scanner but only because I share files with Windows users and feel it would be impolite to pass on an infection to them, you know, kind of like a digital Typhoid Mary; immune but carrying.

    Linux is a lot harder to infect for a few reasons:
    • The users have tended to be more from the tech savvy end of the spectrum.
    • We have been using signed repositories or "app stores" as the kids now call them for well over a decade, maybe over two.
    • The permission structure makes it harder for malware to spread, although a users data or personal information can still be at risk from an attack.
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    thank you for the reply guys, so as in saying that i've read this somewhere a couple days ago
    that the foundation of an Linux OS is in multiply codes in different sections, as Windows would be under 1 huge code in 1 section.

    so simply put if an virus were to attack Linux would it only attack 1 certain area of the code (1 section) and it'll be less likely to spread fast right?

    kinda saying it this way
    Windows = 1 Pound of Cake
    Linux = 4 quarter pounds of cake which equals 1 pound

    you eat that piece of cake from windows you're eating that whole section....
    and you eat that Linux cake you have 1 out of 4 of that cake, and the other 3 are fresh since their individually packaged.....
    hope this makes sense as what i am saying? lol i am trying to explain this infront of a classroom so ill have to make it simply for others to understand.

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    Penguin of trust elija's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zhengcl86 View Post
    so simply put if an virus were to attack Linux would it only attack 1 certain area of the code (1 section) and it'll be less likely to spread fast right?
    Say rather that unless the user gives it permission the virus can only affect the user's home directory. This prevents the nasty from spreading; mostly as it could still access the user's address book. That also makes it difficult to start a service that joins a botnet. As Linux users have traditionally been of a techie, geeky nature, they are less likely to give the permission needed.

    I think it will be interesting to see how it does should Canonical succeed in bringing in a flood of new users who have been pre-conditioned to just click OK...
    What do we want?
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    Quote Originally Posted by elija View Post
    Say rather that unless the user gives it permission the virus can only affect the user's home directory. This prevents the nasty from spreading; mostly as it could still access the user's address book. That also makes it difficult to start a service that joins a botnet. As Linux users have traditionally been of a techie, geeky nature, they are less likely to give the permission needed.

    I think it will be interesting to see how it does should Canonical succeed in bringing in a flood of new users who have been pre-conditioned to just click OK...
    this makes more sense to me kind of, so its mostly User error that virus are on computers obviously, since Windows are more User friendly, everything just requires an "ok" click, but as Linux users they know what to click and what not to click correct? and would you guys can Linux is not User friendly unlike windows?

    also can i get a few examples of Anti-Virus softwares? if Linux users do or don't run them.
    Last edited by zhengcl86; 04-13-2013 at 01:25 AM.

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    First and foremost, any computer that is running any form of Windows, Linux or Apple, connected to the Internet, or that interacts with other computers, or that ever has a media storage device plugged into it absolutely, without argument or question, MUST have some form of security.

    The theory that Unix based systems (Linux and Apple) are impervious to viruses is a common misconception. Apple users used to believe that was true, and 2012 was the year that belief was dashed to utter pieces. It's only that it is not a commonly used operating system and hackers were not targeting that operating system as much. After all, Linux and Apple eat up less than 15% of the PC world. Windows has almost everything else. You're better off building viruses and trogens for Windows which also, as an added bonus, has far, far less built in security. When you have to make an administrator's decision in Windows a popup window appears that asks if u want to continue, click yes or no. In Linux, if you want to make an administrative move, you have to enter a password. The difference in security models is night and day. However, Apple is getting more and more popular so more attention is being put on it now. And soon Linux also will become a greater target also since both operatng systems are growing in popularity.

    The difference, Apple users for years told the world that Apple was virus proof, and Apple never corrected them, so the lie spread. Even to this day many uninformed people still think OSX is invulerable and in order to use linux you need to be an advanced programmer and use the CLI (command line interface). Linux, on the other hand, has been based around security. Linux users have encouraged others to be careful and have some form of security and secured the *root* files from being messed with unless the approiate passwords are entered.

    One last point is that installing a basic antivirus on your computer is free, quick, and even on a computer from the late 90s, you will see NO loss in performance. Even if you think the OS alone will keep you safe, doesn't it feel better to have that extra layer of safety? A house has a locked door, but many people still have a alarm system and/or a gun, just in case the lock fails.

    So in conclusion, hackers currently are less likely to attack a Linux based system since it is not a very common operating system. HOWEVER, that is called "Security through Obscurity" which is a foolish security policy. If you are not monitoring and keeping your security up to date, one day you'll stumble onto a website with a virus built to attack linux based systems. Linux IS the most secure operating system in existance, but there NEVER has and NEVER will be a virus proof operating system, ever.

    Good luck on your paper.

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    Years ago, I forget in which magazine, there was an article that described OS security best.
    Windows technically has the strongest security, however since it is the most populated by users it is the most targeted. It's like having ten bolt locks and bars on the windows but you live in a crime ridden area.
    Macintosh is like living in a suburb where you feel comfortable to leave your front door unlocked when you're home while despite there is still occasional crime.
    Linux is like living in the desert with no one else for miles, and a simple lock on the front door but all of your valuables are buried under the floorboards.

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    are there any famous viruses that successfully invaded Linux?

    for Windows as an example the "Melissa Virus"
    thank you guys greatly appreciated, now i have to remember all of this stuff and represent it as a Power point !! >.<

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