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markjensen

Mac and Linux viruses to rise 'significantly'

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Source: PCPro

There will be a significant rise in virus attacks on both the Mac and open-source platforms, according to renowned security expert, Eugene Kaspersky.

The co-founder and head of anti-virus research at Kaspersky Labs claims that Vista's lukewarm reception will drive more customers towards alternative platforms, making them a more attractive target for malware writers. 'Home users are not so loyal to the OS. Not many of them are satisfied with Microsoft Vista,' Kaspersky told PC Pro. 'Some Windows users will switch to other OSes. Microsoft will not lose its dominance, but it will be reduced a bit.'

Kaspersky claims that Mac viruses are no more difficult to repel than Windows attacks, but says 'it's not so easy to find good [anti-virus] experts for non-Windows platforms.'

Open source presents more serious problems, however. 'More people are watching open-source code, so they are more quick to find problems. If the people who make the fix are good guys, that's great; if they are bad guys, that's a problem,' Kaspersky warns.

Vista doesn't escape Kaspersky's wrath, either. Although he agrees Vista is fundamentally more secure than XP, he says not all security vendors have perfected their software for Vista yet. 'Is a less protected XP with a ready set of security applications better than a more secure Vista with less developed security applications?' he asks. 'Microsoft paid a lot of attention to security [in Vista], but it means less flexibility for security vendors. It's like an airport - it's more secure than on the street, but there's less flexibility.'

New platforms to attack

Kaspersky also warned that malware writers are increasingly turning their attention to non-PC platforms, including consoles and smartphones. He even raised the prospect of PlayStation AV software. 'If there are viruses for the PlayStation 3, if the situation is such that we have to have protection for these devices, we will have products,' he says.

The Russian also claims that foreign malware experts are growing wise to new developments in the smartphone arena. 'The hackers who develop code for computers don't know how to write for smartphones [at present],' Kaspersky claims. '[However] this year they are going to introduce online banking through smartphones and Chinese hackers will turn to smartphone phishing,' he says.

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Translation: "Gimmie Money!"

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Well he certainly has a vested interest in that being the case doesnt he.....

Scaremongering = $$$$$$$$$$$$$ for him

I'd ignore this tbh (N)

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that's what i call a bad, yet accurate statement: if only 1 virus is created for osx/linux, then that is already a significant increase (the change from 0 to 1 involves an infinite percentage increase). From that point of view: yes, there MIGHT be a significant increase. However, it is more likely that this so-called expert is just trying to create panic and sell (as of now) completely pointless antivirus software.

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There are already several viruses/trojans for Linux, you have to go out of your way to run them though.

Of course, sit an absolute beginner down at a system, and give them instructions to follow, and they could probably get it going.

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and yet linux and OS X are still much less at risk of viral infections due to market share. Strike one up for the minority.

OS X for life.

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There are already several viruses/trojans for Linux, you have to go out of your way to run them though.

+1 :yes:

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In order to get viruses on the PS3, Wii and 360, they gotta figure out how to run unsigned code on it. Good luck!

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If it became necesary, I'd rather take SELinux or AppArmor over any of those crappy programs.

Antivirus developers should better hope Windows marketshare doesn't decrease too much, because they have little business to do on the *nix side.

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There are already several viruses/trojans for Linux, you have to go out of your way to run them though.
Yep I have avast installed and run a check once in a while just for the hell of it

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If it became necesary, I'd rather take SELinux or AppArmor over any of those crappy programs.

Antivirus developers should better hope Windows marketshare doesn't decrease too much, because they have little business to do on the *nix side.

That might depend...

Imagine a future where 50% of the world's home clueless users (ones that just buy a PC and run it without ever thinking of updating) ran Linspire, or some other "run as root" distro.

Combine clueless users (the #1 cause of spreading malware), un-updated PCs (the #2 cause), a significant marketshare, plus running as root... :no:

That's a bad combination (and this is what Microsoft has been facing since the days that PCs became "easy to use").

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Why Linspire? I think if they're going to run anything, it'd be either SuSE or Ubuntu.

I know it was just an example, but those 2 are ones I think are more likely to dominate.

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That might depend...

Imagine a future where 50% of the world's home clueless users (ones that just buy a PC and run it without ever thinking of updating) ran Linspire, or some other "run as root" distro.

Combine clueless users (the #1 cause of spreading malware), un-updated PCs (the #2 cause), a significant marketshare, plus running as root... :no:

That's a bad combination (and this is what Microsoft has been facing since the days that PCs became "easy to use").

Then those poor guys would probably suffer the consequences of choosing an OS with moronic default settings, and since they're already running as root and not updating the system, I don't see how any antivirus would make any difference.

The point is that, as long as you're at least minimally concerned about security, there are far better tools available than those antivirus.

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I don't think new users will be as clueless on Windows as Linux in the near future though. We'll see how things go.

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Why Linspire? I think if they're going to run anything, it'd be either SuSE or Ubuntu.

I know it was just an example, but those 2 are ones I think are more likely to dominate.

Well, in my experience, I agree with markjensen's statement.

I am a Linux n00b for all intents and purposes; I ran few distros for a bit but GUI only, more as a curiosity than need.

Newest Ubuntu - I threw in the towel after about 2 1/2 hours spent to try make networking work. That is after I got past hangs during the install, no errors even though stuff from CD was missing etc. IMO Ubuntu is far from the average Windows user (and I consider myself an advanced Windows user).

Linspire - I could install that and get it running with 0 problems. So did Ark Linux.

The distro that cathers to a typical Windows user will do well.

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IMO Ubuntu is far from the average Windows user (and I consider myself an advanced Windows user).

Being an advanced windows user wont help when using linux (I mean, besides stuff like "point and click"), actually you might have even more problems than a noob user.

The more you know on windows, the more you try to do stuff the same way on linux.

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Being an advanced windows user wont help when using linux (I mean, besides stuff like "point and click"), actually you might have even more problems than a noob user.

The more you know on windows, the more you try to do stuff the same way on linux.

Being an advanced user does help you when u try to fix all the problems that a lot of people experience when they install Linux. Without any computer knowledge, going to Linux will honestly make things kinda worse because you don't even know what you are doing. Being an advanced user helps you understand what you are trying to do for the most part although it doesn't make life any easier when fighting the problems that are shipped with most of the Linux distros for most of the users. Unless you have done Linux fixing and stuff before, its not as easy as download a driver and double click or drag it to install it.

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Being an advanced user does help you when u try to fix all the problems that a lot of people experience when they install Linux. Without any computer knowledge, going to Linux will honestly make things kinda worse because you don't even know what you are doing. Being an advanced user helps you understand what you are trying to do for the most part although it doesn't make life any easier when fighting the problems that are shipped with most of the Linux distros for most of the users. Unless you have done Linux fixing and stuff before, its not as easy as download a driver and double click or drag it to install it.

If the problems people experience on linux are related to driver availability, then knowing that you need a driver helps, but knowing how to install one on windows does not.

Both the noob and the advanced windows user would be lost if you tell them they need to compile and load a kernel module. The difference is that the noob, clueless as he is, would try to get some guidance and follow the instructions to the letter, while the advanced windows user will probably try to apply his windows expertise, usually getting as far from the right path as it gets.

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Advanced windows user does NOT equal advanced computer user.

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If the problems people experience on linux are related to driver availability, then knowing that you need a driver helps, but knowing how to install one on windows does not.

Both the noob and the advanced windows user would be lost if you tell them they need to compile and load a kernel module.

Write because a n00b should really compile stuff, all I am saying is that it should be as easy as possible on the user n00b or whatever.. and at this point in the game, linux is not compared to the other alternatives in the market.

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Write because a n00b should really compile stuff, all I am saying is that it should be as easy as possible on the user n00b or whatever.. and at this point in the game, linux is not compared to the other alternatives in the market.

Yeah, because installing unsupported hardware on windows or mac is sooo much easier :rolleyes:

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Yeah, because installing unsupported hardware on windows or mac is sooo much easier :rolleyes:
I agree with your general direction here... For example, when my old Canon IX-4015 scanner had support dropped after WinME, Canon was to blame, not Microsoft. And when it was dropped from SANE support in Linux, it was because of lack of vendor documentation/support. (yeah, I could use an old SANE, but it just isn't worth it for that old scanner) Sure, many Windows users point to "Linux" as the problem for support, but I don't let that bother me. It is just their incorrect perspective.

However, when it comes to hardware support, I don't think it is very easy to go into any general computer store, buy a piece of hardware and have it not work in Windows. All those pieces of equipment were designed to work in Windows, and have drivers on CD with them, usually. These stores are "Windows-compatible hardware" warehouses. A Linux user has to be a bit pickier and often research just a bit (a quick google) to find out what hardware to avoid or to specifically look for.

Is that the fault of Linux. No. Just a fact of life being a Linux user in a Windows world. I don't think .Ark was trying to say "Linux sux for teh hardwarez!" or anything. Just pointing out that Linux users are the 'odd man out', so it requires forethought in hardware purchases. And many people trying Linux already have their hardware picked without thinking of Linux compatibility.

My this is all off-topic. :p

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Advanced windows user does NOT equal advanced computer user.

And why not? Advanced user is anyone who knows his/her way around their OS of choice, not someone who wants everything to be workable via commandline.

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Oh, well. The Antivurus companies create the viruses anyway so if they say there will be an increase then there will probably be an increase.

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And why not? Advanced user is anyone who knows his/her way around their OS of choice, not someone who wants everything to be workable via commandline.
An advanced Windows user is just an advanced Windows user.

An advanced Linux user is just an advanced Linux user.

A computer is far more than just the OS. Too many people that only have Windows exposure think they know "computers". Granted, many of them may also be familiar with what's going on with the PCI bus internals. Or large corporate networking. But many more have no clue. Same with Linux users.

Then, add in mainframes, or other non-x86 architectures... And you see that an advanced "Single-OS" user (regardless of which OS) has a rather focused realm of knowledge. Cakey isn't trying to say (I don't think so, anyhow) that Advanced Windows users are idiots.

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