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How To Argue That Open Source Software Is Secure? 674

Smidge207 writes "Lately there has been a huge push by Certified Microsoft Professionals and their companies to call (potential) clients and warn them of the dangers of open source. This week I received calls from four different customers saying that they were warned that they are dangerously insecure because they run open source operating systems or software, because 'anyone can read the code and hack you with ease.' Other colleagues in the area also have noticed that three local Microsoft Partners have been trying to strike fear in the minds of companies that respond, 'Yes, we use open source or Linux' when the sales call comes in. I know this is simply a sales tactic by these companies, but how do I fix the damage these tactics cause? I have several customers who now want more than my word about the security of systems that have worked for them flawlessly for 5-6 years, with minimal expense outside of upgrades and patching for security. Does anyone have a good plan or sources of reliable information that can be used to inform the customer?"

I've got a bad feeling about this.