[ISN] Survey Says Linux Hacks Are Rare

InfoSec News isn at c4i.org
Thu Jul 29 02:51:50 EDT 2004


By TechWeb News
July 28, 2004 

Adding more fuel to the Linux vs. Windows fire, a research firm
released a survey Wednesday that noted only 8% of Linux developers had
ever seen a virus infect their systems.

Evans Data, a research firm that regularly polls developers, surveyed
500 Linux developers. An overwhelming majority--92%--claimed that
their machines had never been infected by malicious code, and fewer
than 7% said that they'd been the victims of three of more hacker

Only 22% of Linux developers said that their systems had ever been

A similar survey by Evans last spring found that nearly 60% of
non-Linux developers admitted they'd been victimized by security
breaches, and 32% had been hit three or more times.

Does that mean Linux is a more secure operating system? Nicholas
Petreley, Evans Data's Linux analyst, certainly thinks so.

"It's not surprising that Linux systems aren't hacked to the degree
that Windows-based machines can be exploited," he said in a statement.  
"The reasons for the greater inherent security of the Linux OS are
simple: More eyes on the code means that less slips by and the OS is
naturally going to be better secured."

Another factoid from the July survey found that 76% of developers now
believe that the SCO Group's ongoing lawsuits will "probably not" or
"absolutely not" affect their company's adoption of the open-source
operating system. That number is up 8% from when the question was last
asked six months ago--a confirmation that SCO's sometimes-struggling
legal battle isn't making much of an impression in the trenches.

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