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Old 07-20-2010, 09:35 PM   #1
billr654
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General Security


Since linux is open source and lots of different versions are available, how can anyone be assured that there are not security flaws in a version or all versions? I really like linux, but I feel uncomfortable putting personal information into a system that I don't understand.
 
Old 07-20-2010, 09:42 PM   #2
rich_c
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You are perfectly at liberty to gain as much understanding and confidence as you can. There's not many other operating systems you can say that for.
 
Old 07-20-2010, 09:46 PM   #3
frankbell
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Because Linux is open source, folks who go in for that kind of stuff pour over the source code of new releases and look for errors and vulnerabilities.

Vulnerabilities tend to be patched much more quickly in Linux than in closed source.

Here's a website where you can track Linux security issues:

http://www.linuxsecurity.com/
 
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Old 07-20-2010, 10:07 PM   #4
win32sux
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billr654 View Post
Since linux is open source and lots of different versions are available, how can anyone be assured that there are not security flaws in a version or all versions?
You're looking at this the wrong way. The only thing you can be sure of is the inverse: that there WILL be security flaws. This applies not just to GNU/Linux, but to pretty much every operating system out there, such as Windows, Mac, BSD, etc. What makes GNU/Linux (and the other F/OSS operating systems) special in this regard is that the source code is free to be reviewed by anyone who wishes to do so.

Quote:
I really like linux, but I feel uncomfortable putting personal information into a system that I don't understand.
What would be an example of a system you currently feel comfortable with and understand? Windows?

Last edited by win32sux; 07-20-2010 at 10:10 PM.
 
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Old 07-21-2010, 10:53 PM   #5
billr654
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I appreciate the replies and I know that nothing is perfect. But is the system safe enough to keep your personal information on your computer? This is a simple question, "Do you guys put any personal information on your computers?"
 
Old 07-21-2010, 11:22 PM   #6
rich_c
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billr654 View Post
"Do you guys put any personal information on your computers?"
Yes. I take enough precautions to make this no more or less risky than storing personal info in a filing cabinet at home.
 
Old 07-21-2010, 11:30 PM   #7
John VV
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there is No such thing as a 100% secure computer
99.99% yes but 100% - no


some are a bit more security orientated
any with SELinux installed and set to "enforcing"
then there is " tin foil linux " -- for the REALLY paranoid
some are more "user point and click" and less " tight "

but for the most part all ( except for DVL ) are mostly secure -- by default
 
Old 07-22-2010, 04:23 AM   #8
Dinithion
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billr654 View Post
I appreciate the replies and I know that nothing is perfect. But is the system safe enough to keep your personal information on your computer? This is a simple question, "Do you guys put any personal information on your computers?"
There is plenty of encryption methods if you are afraid of intruders. That's somewhat inconvenient, but still, your data is safe.

I have no problem in trusting Linux. In fact, I trust it much more then Windows, with build in back doors(*) and controll-freak-apple. And yes, I put everything on my computer. Actually, I rarely even encrypt private data.

(*) they won't admit this, but then again, we don't have the source code, so we can't check for the backdoor either. Windows is like a swiss cheese any way, so sooner rather then later you will probably get some malware, and your private information is compromised anyway..

Last edited by Dinithion; 07-22-2010 at 04:27 AM.
 
Old 07-22-2010, 04:40 AM   #9
Filip_Kv
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Yeap, I agree with Dinithion. If you have sensitive data that you would really like to protect in every OS then you should
use the open source encryption tool Truecrypt. If you use it right, it is very difficult for anyone to gain access. In conjunction with the inherent security of Linux you have a very good combination.

In anycase however, I trust Linux as an ongoing secure system, especdially because it lets me see all the coding that takes place behind the scenes. For instance, since we cannot see the code of Internet Explorer, we could never be 100% sure that it is not forwarding sensitive information 'behind the scenes'. It probably does not, but ... seeing is believing, no?

Last edited by Filip_Kv; 07-22-2010 at 04:42 AM.
 
Old 07-22-2010, 04:54 AM   #10
Wim Sturkenboom
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billr654 View Post
I appreciate the replies and I know that nothing is perfect. But is the system safe enough to keep your personal information on your computer? This is a simple question, "Do you guys put any personal information on your computers?"
I keep copies of proof of payments, bank statements, my passport and driver's license on my Linux box.
 
  


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