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Thread: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

  1. #1
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    Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    It sounds silly but I know the old answer was NO many years ago, the answer is still NO now?

  2. #2
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    Re: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    Quote Originally Posted by j2ee View Post
    It sounds silly but I know the old answer was NO many years ago, the answer is still NO now?
    I don't, unless a contract requires it, like professional E&O insurance.
    There is a sticky post at the top of the "Security" sub-forum here with more.

  3. #3
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    Re: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    Have been using Linux distros since 2005 and have never installed or used antivirus.

  4. #4
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    Re: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rubi1200 View Post
    Have been using Linux distros since 2005 and have never installed or used antivirus.
    +1 Same here.
    With realization of one's own potential and self-confidence in one's ability, one can build a better world.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    Quote Originally Posted by emre-atakuru08 View Post
    No because if you install something on linux system
    you can read everything of code so hackers doesn't write virus
    if you don't know programming language of code
    maybe you can install harmful things on your computer
    How about if I visit some websites and somehow the site does something to my computer? You really read every single line of code when you visit a website!?

  6. #6
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    Re: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    Quote Originally Posted by emre-atakuru08 View Post
    No because if you install something on linux system
    you can read everything of code so hackers doesn't write virus
    if you don't know programming language of code
    maybe you can install harmful things on your computer
    I disagree with the reasoning above.

    Not all source code is available. There are viruses for Linux. There are worms, there are remote exploits, and it isn't that hard to trick a user into copy/pasting commands that could be used to take over a linux system.

    Nobody has the time or the skill to review all the source code on their system. Experts in programs have been known to miss issues in their own code, much less catch problems in other people's code.

    There are viruses written for Linux, but generally those are used to attack Linux servers, not desktops. It is purely a numbers game. Suppose over 50% of the servers on the internet are running Linux, while only 1% of the desktops do. Where would you spend your time? There are millions of Linux servers running right now which have been hacked and are doing something other than what their admin thinks they should be doing. https://www.zdnet.com/article/wordpr...sites-in-2018/
    https://www.wpwhitesecurity.com/stat...ns-vulnerable/
    https://www.linux.com/learn/myth-bus...immune-viruses

    But for typical end users, only installing software from the Canonical repositories, not running any services, always behind a currently patched router with a firewall enabled, the risks are tiny. Just don't go visiting bad parts of the internet, opening email attachments from unknown sources, or running code you download from untrusted places.

  7. #7
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    Re: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    Quote Originally Posted by TheFu View Post
    I disagree with the reasoning above.

    Not all source code is available. There are viruses for Linux. There are worms, there are remote exploits, and it isn't that hard to trick a user into copy/pasting commands that could be used to take over a linux system.

    Nobody has the time or the skill to review all the source code on their system. Experts in programs have been known to miss issues in their own code, much less catch problems in other people's code.

    There are viruses written for Linux, but generally those are used to attack Linux servers, not desktops. It is purely a numbers game. Suppose over 50% of the servers on the internet are running Linux, while only 1% of the desktops do. Where would you spend your time? There are millions of Linux servers running right now which have been hacked and are doing something other than what their admin thinks they should be doing. https://www.zdnet.com/article/wordpr...sites-in-2018/
    https://www.wpwhitesecurity.com/stat...ns-vulnerable/
    https://www.linux.com/learn/myth-bus...immune-viruses

    But for typical end users, only installing software from the Canonical repositories, not running any services, always behind a currently patched router with a firewall enabled, the risks are tiny. Just don't go visiting bad parts of the internet, opening email attachments from unknown sources, or running code you download from untrusted places.
    How about the ads on popular sites got hacked?

  8. #8
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    Re: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    Twist on the scenario -- I Ubuntu shares a partition or stores files obtained from Windows -- does it need an Antivirus? Perhaps the answer in this scenario should be possibly?

  9. #9
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    Re: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    Quote Originally Posted by kevdog View Post
    Twist on the scenario -- I Ubuntu shares a partition or stores files obtained from Windows -- does it need an Antivirus? Perhaps the answer in this scenario should be possibly?
    This is an interesting question...

  10. #10
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    Re: Does Ubuntu need antivirus?

    If you store Windows files on your Ubuntu system (via samba, or a mounted NTFS partition, etc). any malware won't infect the Ubuntu system since it can't/won't run Windows executables. The only exceptions here is if you use WINE, or if the malware is in a script language that an interpreter is available for like Perl or Python, and even in these cases, someone would have to explicitly run the script.

    If you're using Ubuntu as a file server/NAS storing files accessed by Windows systems, chances are the Windows systems will have antivirus on them anyway, so it's not really the responsibility of the NAS to scan/clean files. But, you could install an antivirus and use it to scan the Windows share folders if you like.

    Another case where you may want a virus scanner in Ubuntu is if you're running an email server, especially one that Windows clients will use, and you want to scan incoming attachments, or a website that allows files to be uploaded and stored and you want them scanned.
    Last edited by kpatz; 10 Hours Ago at 02:12 PM.
    Current 'buntu systems: Server 18.04.2 LTS, Mythbuntu 16.04 LTS, Ubuntu 16.04.1 LTS / Retired: 14.04 LTS, 10.04 LTS, 8.04 LTS
    Been using ubuntu since 6.04 (13 years!)

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