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Whatever happened to virus`

shutter
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Whatever happened to virus`

Apart from the medical type... e.g. Covid19 ..

When I started to use a computer   it was Windows 3.1  on floppy discs... then I gravitated to Windows 95 and so on... always had to make sure I had some form of "Anti-Virus" software installed... AVG was my preferred.. for no real reason.. just think it was the first one someone suggested.. over the years.. I progressed to AVIRA and AVAST... but at no time did I ever experience a virus threat... so .. was I lucky?  or were these AV progs really doing some good work.... 

During the last 5 years or so, there seemed to be a lot of talk about virus attacks.  but again. never seemed to affect me... nowadays,... we don`t hear anything about virus attacks.... have the geeks that perpetrated them, decided they have had their fun.... and moved on to other things ?

 

( I`m using Linux Mint 20.1 now... with no AV.. so should I be worried or not  ? ? ? )

 

Just something to talk about ... not a techy problem.... so put it on General Chat.  Smiley

35 REPLIES 35
Mook
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

Ransomeware is where the threat is now.

Running Linux you should still be proactive maybe not worried, but you're not immune. All it takes is a single click or the briefest lack of attention and you're infected.

Minivanman
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

Sounds to me @shutter like you've been double vaccinated. 

Just watch out for those variants. 😉


I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.
Thomas A. Edison
jab1
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

@shutter Speaking personally, I have only twice, from memory, had worrying bugs on my system in the 20+ years I've had a computer at home. The first was, strangely enough, from a Cnet email in the days when I subscribed, and I can't remember the cause of the second, so I think the 'risks' are over-hyped.

Admittedly, I have always been cautious with checking links I go to - wherever they come from - and unsolicited emails have always been binned before they get to my system for as long as I've had Mailwasher - and that's a long time - prior to that they were scanned with whatever AV I was running at the time.

Comes from my involvement with IT in an organisation where security was strongly emphasised, I suppose. These days, I have Avast on my Windows machine, but any scanning of received documents &c. is done by Malwarebyte - I have more faith in that product.

John
Minivanman
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

Add to that I guess we've also become more educated especially since the internet took off in the late 90s.

We were only to aware not to trust what we read in the papers and still don't, to now not trusting what comes into our computers - the difference being we have to really on our nose to spot them or those guardian anti-virus software when we can't.

But can we trust the guardians? 

As for those 'cookie jars' we are obliged to open...

  


I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.
Thomas A. Edison
Champnet
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

Not much to be made from infecting a computer or system with a virus, either generating spam emails, or being a nuisance showing websites you’d rather not see, or just destroying your system.

@Mook is right “Ransomeware is where the threat is now.”

 

jab1
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

Agreed, @Champnet - but to get 'infected' by a ransomware bug, you still have to click on something, be it a dodgy site, or a dodgy email, and I think I, at least, can spot those these days.

Not saying everyone can, and I suppose I could be caught, but it would have to be a really sophisticated one.

John
Champnet
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

@jab1 , I’d like to think you’re right but in reality anybody can be caught, no matter how careful they are…

jab1
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

Agreed - but I haven't been - yet. 😉

John
shutter
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

So... from the above comments.... it seems likely that the problems are still there...but probably not "new" viruses.... more likely "leftovers" from when the guys were "having a bit of fun" wrecking peoples computers.... a bit like throwing bricks through people`s windows, or ringing the doorbell, and then running away, in days of yore !.

 

From what I have been reading, about the need, or not, of AV software on Linux systems... so long as you just keep it as a Linux system, it should be ok NOT to have any... indeed, many linux forumites would suggest that trying to install and use the common AV software, could do harm to the system.

 It appears that if you want to run Windows software.. ( as I do ). on Linux, then you must, of course, install WINE and this is a vulnerable place..... However... I have been using Linux with WINE installed, and quite a lot of "windows type" software, seriously, since Win 7 stopped being supported.  All the Software that I us, was previously used on my WIndows machines..with no problems of virus attack...( as far as I know !).. and I feel safe enough using the same programs now.

 

My main idea of posting this thread, was to see if anyone had noticed the "drop off" in virus attack cases over the past (say) 5 years.. 

jab1
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

As I said, @shutter , personally I haven't noticed a drop-off, but then two issues in, shall we say, 20 years, for me, is probably not totally representative. I have noticed though, that the reporting of true 'virus' attacks has certainly reduced to close to zero, but the ransomware type has kind of risen - but usually aimed at commercial/state systems, which obviously makes it newsworthy.

As to the Linux angle, I have tried to install and run ClamAV at least three times, but it just won't work properly, even after trying numerous 'fixes' , so I have given up. My attitude is that if I have had such a low volume of problems on a supposedly vulnerable OS, do I really need to worry on what is still a 'niche' OS, so long as I continue to practice safe computing?

John
shutter
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

@jab1   Yes, Indeed, I agree with what you are saying... definitely seems to be more "commercial" type attacks, than personal.

As for ClamAv... hadn`t heard of it until a couple of days ago, when doing some googling on AV for Linux.. not tried it, because , as you say, low incidence over the past XXX number of years !.

From what I have read about Linux risks.... the guru`s seem to be of the opinion that... if you ONLY RUN LINUX approved software, then you are 99% safe,  Risk is increased when using WINE and downloading "dodgy" Windows type programs, but no advice given as to which AV software to use to minimise this risk,, or even if it would be effective against any virus attack.The other main risk to Linux users, would be if they were running a public server or mail system.... which I don`t...  !

Windows progs on Linux are allocated a separate Folder/Directory called Drive C:  simulating the windows setup, so I`m not sure if that is also some kind of security, as it is not part of the MAIN O.S. of Linux on the HDD/SSD

jab1
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

Sounds about right, @shutter . ClamAV is the 'recommended' option on Zorin - it is in the 'Unofficial' guide I got from the guy in Sheffield who has helped me quite a bit.

As to software and the risks, even on my Windows machine, I have only ever downloaded programs from reliable sources - usually the developers own sites - and only after checking reviews.

Not needed the AV on the Windows machine, the very few (three at current) Windows progs I may have to use on Linux are perfectly safe, and as you say they are kind of 'sandboxed' from the main OS, so I have no concerns.

John
RobPN
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

shutter
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Re: Whatever happened to virus`

That is very clever.... however... as spaken unto many... if you don`t recognise the "seller" who is "invoicing" you then ignore it..

If you think it is genuine,. but are concerned that it is a "fake"  due to not having bought from them ( say AMAZON ) for a while.. why would they invoice you ?  and is that their "normal " way of getting paid for merchandise  ? ?

just needs a bit of care in reading "unsolicited" emails.