On fox news this morning, the former justice dept prosecutor for cyber crimes, now working for fox news computer security (Nabim?), was talking about cyber attacks this week which reveal massive internet holes in the internet infrastructure. They were asking are we ready for increasing attacks and "cyber wars". I didn't get the whole story as I was walking in and out for errands. The expert was saying that the individual at home needs to be vigilant in keeping up with security updates, operating system updates etc (OS updates, browser updates, antivirus, antispyware, firewall), and that we have to be much more responsible in getting these updates. That we can not delay in downloading them, saying (paraphrasing) "when we park our car and accidentally leave the doors unlocked that we go right out and lock them." He says that is the type of vigilance we need to exercise with computer security updates, that we should "never press the "remind me later"" button for security updates, that they need to be updated immediately. Myself I prefer to do my updates manually, but I am fairly vigilant. They go on to say that now days, attackers don't want to just steal financial information, but also cause system damage too. Many cyber attacks and theft are from organized crime (personal study, magazine and internet articles). For example there are former Eastern Block countries that have large software companies that do nothing but evil so to speak, their line of business is exclusively focused on ID theft etc, and they have a big budget because it is so profitable. And they are beyond our reach because they are protected by the country they are in.
BTW, there are large corporations who employ or have departments that specialize in examining hardware components from China to make sure they don't have trojans an other malicious software embedded in their firmware and bios.
I was wondering if anyone here has any further information about the level/severity of current cyber attacks, are we going to have a storm of cyber attacks, are we heading for cyber wars in attacks from the internet?
I was using Win 7 RC, but it is going to begin to shut down March to June, so I have been reverting to my dual booted Win 2000 (also boots into 3 or 4 or more Linux distros). Sales have been glacially slow, and haven't had any offers for jobs as Chief Mad Scientist, so I'm not sure when I can buy a Win 7 license. I have had a few security updates for Win 2000, but is it a vulnerable OS now? I have I think one unused license for win xp pro, perhaps I should dual boot with that on my P4 32 bit internet computer for greater security? I have one unused Vista license which I hope to use on a more powerful 64 bit computer. I used to have the philosophy of using my worst computer for the internet then using my best for flight simulator (perfect logic normally!). However I work so hard on the internet, and I need to change pages fast, do graphics fast, and upload graphics fast, I really need a fast computer for the internet plus broad band internet. Society advances so fast that it seems that dialup is just not adequate (but braodband is so expensive!). Also, I can tell the difference between a fast computer and an older computer in doing my internet work.
Basically I have to have Windows for dialup, I have yet to be able to do dialup on linux.
Regarding OS security strength and vulnerability, just off the top of my head I would rank them in this order ("1" being best: )
1. openBSD (personal study)
2. pcBSD? (logical)
3. Apple OSX (article from zdnet.com) (might be better than pcBSD for security?)
4. obscure Linux distros (Loki)
5. mainstream Linux (article from zdnet.com)
6. Windows 7/Vista (personal opinion extrapolating from zdnet.com article)
7. Win XP (article from zdnet.com)
8. Win 2000 Pro (article from zdnet.com)
9. Win98SE (uh boy, this is not very secure at all, but one thing it has going for it is that not very many people use it any more. It was an amazing OS in my opinion, but it is very vulnerable)
The article I reference above from zdnet.com came out about three years ago, it stated at that time, Windows had 236,000 threats from the internet, viruses, trojans, etc. Linux, often used by corporations, gets attacked by malcontents/criminals who wish to attack these corporations, so surprisingly Linux had 700 threats from the internet at that time. Apple's OSX 10.4 at that time, had 7 threats, SEVEN, incredible. I have a friend who has used an Apple laptop w/ OSX 10.4 for about 5 or more years to run his website, has never installed an antivirus program, and has never had a virus. One time w/ Win 98se, despite how careful I am I got a virus in six months, I erased the hdd (darik's boot and nuke) and resinstalled; other than that I have had very few viruses on 98se when I was using it due to how careful I was.
OpenBSD on their website a couple years ago stated that they have only had I think 3 or 4 security vulnerabilities in the previous 4 or 5 years. Incredible.
If I have a broadband connection I use mainstream Linux, perhaps I should look into pcBSD or the rare Linux distros Loki suggested (more suggestions?). With dialup I have to use Windows. I'm not knocking Windows at all, Windows is crucially important for running Flight Simulator.
Feel free to comment.