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Operating Systems

+ - Recommending a secure OS to the Dalai Lama

Submitted by
Jamyang (Greg Walton)
Jamyang (Greg Walton) writes "I am editor of the Infowar Monitor and co-author of the recent report, Tracking Ghostnet. I have been asked by the Office of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama (OHHDL) and the Tibetan Government in Exile (TGIE) to offer some policy recommendations in light of the ongoing targeted malware attacks directed at the Tibetan community worldwide. Some of the recommendations are relatively straightforward. For example, I will suggest that OHHDL convene an international Board of Advisers, bringing together some of the brightest minds in computer and international security to advise the Tibetans, and that the new Tibetan university stands up a Certified Ethical Hacking course. However, one of the more controversial moves being actively debated by Tibetans on the Dharamsala IT Group [DITG] list, is a mass migration of the exile community (including the government) to Linux, particularly since all of the samples of targeted malware collected exploit vulnerabilities in Windows. I would be very interested to hear Slashdot readers opinions on this debated here. Allow me to play devil's advocate for a moment here: in the short term, moving to a platform that is perhaps less familiar to the attacker provides considerable relief, but it is essentially less difficult to write exploits for Mac OS/Linux than it is for Windows, given the many anti-exploitation mechanisms Microsoft has embedded in the last years, so in the long run, if the attackers want your data, the entire move is moot. People should choose a platform based on their productivity requirements instead of purely security. Furthermore, most of the web servers broken into during these attacks (to be used as command and control servers) were not Windows, but Linux. What do you think? (While I have the floor I'd also like to take this opportunity to plug two initiatives where Slashdot readers can directly help the Tibetan tech community, either through sharing your expertise or your cash! Firstly, one of the obstacles to migrating to Linux for a Tibetan speaker is the lack of decent Tibetan font — can you help? Secondly, Avaaz is raising funds for projects that will help End The Blackout in Tibet, including a proposal to support the deployment of Psiphon's circumvention network. Thanks, or in Tibetan, thuk.je.che!"
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Recommending a secure OS to the Dalai Lama

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