Which OS gives you the most security and privacy?

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1
Hi folks,

Which OS for PC would you recommend for providing the best security (hacking etc) and privacy (from tracking etc)?

Windows vs iOS vs Linux?

Many thanks, D
 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


Thanks very much Hellfire13!

Which is the best option with Linux? From what I understand there are many 'distributions'/options?

How often are the Linux OS distributions updated/patched and how well are they supported? (e.g. Windows you get regular updates for many years).

Open BSD is a new one to me!! :)
 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


Thanks dextermat :)

Which is the best option with Linux? From what I understand there are many 'distributions'/options?

How often are the Linux OS distributions updated/patched and how well are they supported? (e.g. Windows you get regular updates for many years).

 

USAFRet

Splendid
Moderator


The popular Linux distros get a major "update" once a year or so.
Regular patches as needed in between.

How long? Years, again for the popular general use ones.
Ubuntu, for instance, has been regularly updated for 13 years (2004). No indication of that stopping anytime soon.

But the best security system exists between your ears.
 

It's worth nothing that OS X is based on FreeBSD. The security problems with OS X mostly stem from Apple trying to make the GUI really easy for people to use. Likewise, Linux properly installed, updated, and used is very secure. But if you're not a Unix guru and this is your first foray into using Linux, you're probably going to make mistakes installing, configuring, and using it which compromise its security.

I'd suggest sticking with the OS you're familiar with and using it with best practices (anti-virus, anti-malware, ad blocker, don't do stupid stuff like run executables emailed to you). Set up VMWare Player or VirtualBox and install Linux in a virtual machine, so you can play with it and get an idea what using it is like. After you're comfortable with Linux, you can make the switch. (If you become comfortable with it. I learned Unix before DOS, and still prefer Unix for command line tasks. But except for OS X, the GUI layer for the Linux distros I've used has been a clumsy and incomplete substitute for the command line. If I didn't use Windows so I know how to support most of my clients, I'd probably be on OS X even though I despise what Apple has turned into in the last 10 years.)
 

Hellfire13

Respectable
Apr 20, 2016
391
0
2,210
97


Ubuntu, Fedora, Kali...these do get regular updates as far as i know.
 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


Thanks USAFRet

Sounds like Ubuntu could be a good option to start with then.

Any thoughts on Linux Mint?

I agree with the security system between your ears and being careful what you do!

By the way, which (free) anti-virus software do you recommend to use with a secure OS?
 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


Would you suggest Linux Ubuntu as a good starting point (USAFRet mentioned this)?

What's happened with Apple over the past 10 years by the way? :)

How do you feel about personal privacy when using Windows (10) OS? It seems like it wants to gather a lot of personal data...

Thanks! D
 
Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu (which in turn is based on Debian). They're all part of the same Linux family. The Ubuntu people picked and chose which parts of Debian they wanted in an OS to create Ubuntu. The Mint people didn't like some of Ubuntu's choices so they took Ubuntu and replaced some of the parts.

I wouldn't recommend Debian for a beginner. Ubuntu OTOH is perfect for a beginner. If you try Ubuntu and dislike the GUI (the part most people have a problem with), then Mint is a good alternative. And again, I'd suggest you try these in a virtual machine first so you can get an idea what they're like and what the process of using them is like.
 

USAFRet

Splendid
Moderator
Ubuntu or LinuxMint. Both are good.
I use either and/or both on a daily basis, in VM guests.

Personal privacy in Win 10? That is by far not the most egregious offender.
Applications, your cellphone, websites you go to...all far worse than the OS.
 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


Thanks Hellfire13. Which distro would you personally recommend?
 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


Thanks Solandri

Sounds like Ubuntu or Mint are good starting options. Is it just me, or does it look like Ubuntu is better supported? I'd like an option that is most secure and updated/supported...
 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


Thanks USAFRet

Interesting with Windows 10 compared to apps, cellphones and websites...

What do you think about smartphones? I'm seriously thinking about avoiding them completely... but also considering if I were to have one what might be the best option for personal privacy... any thoughts?

But getting back to OS and PC security, have you seen http://www.youronlinechoices.com/ ? Do you think this service is legit? It looks like you can de-list yourself from advertisers on this website. I was a bit concerned it might be a 'dodgy' website.

Thanks D

 

USAFRet

Splendid
Moderator


I'm not the best one to ask about smartphones.
Mine is used for texts from my kids and grandkids, and the occasional voice conversation.
$25 Tracfone, $100/year access, and I don't use all of that $100...lol

That website?
1. It us Europe only, so useless to most of the planet.

2. The VAST majority of people simply do not notice or care. Or know what "companies" are 3 levels behind the website you might be on.
For instance, if I go through the UK link (I'm in the USA)...I can find that an entity called "33Across" has implanted a cookie on my PC.
Who? I have no interaction with them, never been to their website. I know not what they do.
Further research leads to http://33across.com/
"Traffic building and monetization tools created for publishing powerhouses"

And this means what to me? Who are they? Where are they located?
Don't know, mostly don't care.

Marketing and advertising is a very data-intensive business. You are merely a product to be bought and sold.
Your presence, your eyeballs, your mouse clicks.

And advertisers do not have to "collect", people give that away freely. Hence 99% of the data on Facebook.


You want absolute privacy? Pay cash. Stay offline. Completely.
 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


Thanks USAFRet, all good points.

I'm a bit of a hermit when it comes to phones and I'm quite happy to use a 'dumb'/basic phone, but was considering venturing into the world of smartphones... though I'm unsure it's worth it considering the cost (in terms of personal privacy) vs benefits.

I honestly did not realise that so much data was being mined from just browsing the web... I'm amazed by all the tracking and advertisers. There should surely be more choice in this and what data gets collected (with/without permission).

I was hoping there could be a 'middle path' to be online and still retain personal privacy and freedom... but perhaps that is just a dream :)



 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


P.S. I forgot to ask you, what VM software do you use/recommend if I want to play around with Linux within Windows 10? Thanks :)
 

USAFRet

Splendid
Moderator


I use VirtualBox. Daily.
I almost always have a Linux VM running. Usually to check out potentially sketchy websites. Like the one you linked...;)

And also for my dev functions. A Server2012 and a couple of Win 7 and Win 10 clients, in their own little network.
 

donline

Commendable
Apr 20, 2016
160
0
1,640
1


Thanks for the VM recommendation :)

VM is new to me. So how does VM help when opening up potentially unsafe files etc? Does it sandbox them or something?

By the way, was the youronlinechoices.com website legitimate/safe? :/
 
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
P Antivirus / Security / Privacy 2
Paul Wagenseil Antivirus / Security / Privacy 1
Paul Wagenseil Antivirus / Security / Privacy 1
Colif Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
Paul Wagenseil Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
Paul Wagenseil Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
M Antivirus / Security / Privacy 1
G Antivirus / Security / Privacy 2
C Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
G Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
Johnny5 Antivirus / Security / Privacy 13
Paul Wagenseil Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
D Antivirus / Security / Privacy 34
AndrewFreedman Antivirus / Security / Privacy 3
G Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
henrytcasey Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
G Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
Paul Wagenseil Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
henrytcasey Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0
Paul Wagenseil Antivirus / Security / Privacy 0

Similar threads


ASK THE COMMUNITY