Originally Published: Saturday, 1 April 2000 Author: John C Borkowski
Published to: news_enhance_security/Security News Page: 1/1 - [Printable]

NYT: Linux's Open-Door Policy Could Let Hackers Right In

The NY Times is running a story about Linux being a Security Risk. The basic theory goes that since the source is available, all the hackers of the world can find the holes in the software.

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There is a growing war amongst security experts regarding Open Source software. One side feels that open source nature make Software more secure as it is evaluated by programmers from around the world as it is being developed. This story from the NY TImes (free login required), explains the other side, that says because the source is available to the world, hackers can take advantage of bugs in the soaftware. They also go on to say that since the patches are also available the hacker can get inside the fix and find more loopholes.

A few things I think many of these experts are missing; The fact that the software is developed over time before being labeled as production quality software, gives the developers a chance to find weaknesses and correct them as the software evolves. They also assume that software created behind closed doors can be better controlled, and when released, no one will be able to figure out how it works. Two examples of why they are wrong would be that Windows 2K was released with 64K known problems, and CSS the DVD encryption scheme, that was supoosed to be unbreakable, has been broken.





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