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  1. #1

    Question Kylin and Linux malware

    Recently, the government of China announced that their homegrown OS Kylin, a variant of Ubuntu (I think), will become the standard platform for all of China. On the one hand, hey, good for them. On the other hand…is anyone concerned that this will lead to a big increase in Linux malware?
    Last edited by Blueclef; 03-24-2013 at 12:16 PM. Reason: typo

  2. #2
    Linux Enthusiast Steven_G's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Western US
    Well I see a few possible implications:

    The bigger footprint makes for a bigger target. But, that day has been coming for a while. The community will just have to deal with it and rise to the challenge.

    What worries me more is that the Chinese insist on fanatical control of their citizens access to the internet and Canonical has reached an agreement to provide not only a desktop OS, but a server OS as well.

    Hopefully the hidden and "unremovable" spyware that the Chinese will insist be installed in these OS's will not make it back to the Ubuntu main distros and will not even be available it their repos.

    And hopefully Linus, the Linux Foundation and the EFF will make sure that crap does not make it in to the main line kernel.

    It's also just one more reason to not be so hot on Ubuntu from a technical or political prespective. I mean, after all, helping the Chinese spy on their citizens (which has been shown time and time again is the only way you do e biz in China) just shows that Shuttleworth will do anything for a buck.

    It also spits in the face of one of the underlying tenants of FOSS: Fredom baby!

  3. #3
    Thanks for the reply, Steven. I've been assuming that a mass market distro of Kylin funded by the Chinese government would almost certainly have some spyware built in, but it hadn't occurred to me that there would be any chance of this sort of malware somehow making it into other distros.

  4. $spacer_open
  5. #4
    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    I can be found either 40 miles west of Chicago, in Chicago, or in a galaxy far, far away.
    I think the Chinese government, just like ours, has ignored the law of unintended consequences. In this case, what goes around, comes around in that if they can spy on their people, then their people can spy on them if the government is also using such compromised systems! Let the games begin!
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

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