Your OS Might Not Be as Secure as You Think

I can think of one issue more polarizing than politics: operating systems. The partisanship of Democrats and Republicans is nothing compared to Windows users versus Mac users, especially when talking about OS security. Throw in the devoted Linux users and you have the making of quite a lively debate.

Okay, honest Windows users acknowledge that their favored OS has had its share of security issues, but the release of Windows 7 addresses a number of former security flaws.

So what about the other operating systems? Are they as foolproof as users want to believe?

Probably not. Apple confirmed this year that it included malware protection in its Snow Leopard OS and a growing number of Mac OS users are being infected with botnets and Trojans.

Linux, particularly Ubuntu Linux, has long been touted as the most secure OS available, but Chad Perrin writes at TechRepublic that this is one of the greatest security myths of 2009.

“The truth is that Linux is not the most secure OS in the world, no matter what form that claim takes. In fact, one cannot reasonably make such a sweeping claim that any OS is the most secure in the world, because the relative security of a given OS depends on too many factors, including how it will be used and configured, the sorts of dangers to which it will be subjected, and the specific standards of security that are most appropriate to a given circumstance.”

Bottom line: It is best to choose the OS that works best for your business needs and then administer good security practices.

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