Assuming you want to stop the user from causing system wide damage, you should look at Linux security tutorials. Typically a single user will not have more control then changing the files in his home folder. Also your dd example uses devices that could be made available to only root. So I would start by going through the tutorials on this website it will really help. If you have any specific questions then be more clear with them, and linux doesn't have many fiiles to modify in order to restrict users. It's usually done with permissions and the groups the user belongs to.
File Permission Tutorial