Most IT savvy individuals swear by the various Linux Operating Systems distros due to the open source nature of Linux OS. That is just one of the reasons. Another key reason is the relatively lesser malware threats encountered by Linux OS users. In fact, a good number of avid Linux users will swear to have never used anti-malware programs. Unfortunately, the façade of Linux being malware proof is being eroded rather fast. Here is a look at the malware affecting Linux
The Underlying Cause of Increase in Infections
Linux OS has been gaining traction as the operating system of choice in various devices such as routers, security cameras, and even smart TVs and set top boxes. This is credited as being one of the major reasons for the growth in malware tailored for Linux OS. Indeed major information security companies attest to this fact. For instance, AV-Test, an information security trend reviews company, notes that the number of Linux attacks doubled from 2015 to 2016. It goes on to caution, that with the expected increase of Linux OS to power Internet of Things (IoT) devices, consumers should be ready to face more attacks.
You are not likely to have encountered a large host of Linux OS malware because the distribution of such malware is slower as compared to other operating systems. Nonetheless, there are some malware that are worth putting a finger on. The Tsunami backdoor malware is one such program. This program affects devices by providing a stealth entry point to the devices they infect. The malware then links the devices to a long list of botnets. Other malware include Mirai, EnergyMech and the recently discovered Linux/IRCBotnet. It is worth mentioning that unlike Windows OS, Linux is yet to face a major ransomware scare such as those caused by Wannacry and Petya malware. However, that should not make you smile. If anything, it should make you caution yourself even further.
Protecting your Linux OS device against attack
Protection against malware infections always employ a standard line across the board. Among the most efficient means of attack control include
• Use of anti-virus software: Just like Windows and Mac OS, Linux too has a good number of reliable antivirus software. You are less likely to find the same big names that you are used in Windows and Mac, but you will still find some dependable programs.
• Updating your OS and programs: From time to time, your operating system and the programs within it will require an update. Updates not only gives you the chance to enjoy new features but also patch up bugs that would have been used by malware. Therefore, never assume that you are safe. Patch up and protect yourself.
• Updating your device’s firmware: As mentioned before Linux is making its mark as the IoT choicest OS. As such you are likely to have routers, televisions, servers and home maintenance devices that rely on Linux. Always check up with the devices’ manufacturer for firmware updates because most of these devices are also becoming malware targets.
• General care: After all is said and done you are still connected to the internet and will most likely need to read news, download media file and software from the internet. It is important to check on the sites you visit. This is might be a hard thing to do intuitively. Nevertheless, you can employ the use of browser plugins that check for website safety and stop malware injection into your computer. the underlining phrase is, ‘maintain your safety.’