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Do we need virus protection?
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Old 07/02/2009, 12:14 PM   #1 (permalink)
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With the connection speeds of the Pre, I'm surfing much more than i did with my treo 650. So I started to wonder about viruses/spyware/etc. I seem to recall hearing about viruses on cell phones several years ago but this was the only recent "discussion" I could find in the forum (excerpt from "Palm Pre FAQ:Round 2" post 5/4/09):

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Originally Posted by Mahootzki View Post
Inside Sprint Now

With the new webOS, what about virus protection?
The core is not open, and isnít subject to any viruses, in other words, youíre covered!
Could someone please explain this to a non-techie? Is it just a matter of time before "they" figure out how to get in? Thanks!
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Old 07/02/2009, 12:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Are you planning on going on to porn sites and stuff?? If soo than yes you will get some type of virus im sure
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Old 07/02/2009, 12:20 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Yea it's called TEP...

and no you don't need virus protection.
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Old 07/02/2009, 12:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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With a windows operating system, programs and the the operating system are integrated. So a virus can be very damaging to a windows operating system, since the virus can attack the operating system itself, and effect other programs.

Programs in a Linux operating systems are not integrated into the operating system. Linux cores simply give programs a place to run on there own.

That's not to say a virus couldn't destroy your web browser on a Linux operating system, but that should be the only program effected.
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Old 07/02/2009, 01:30 PM   #5 (permalink)
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writing a virus for webos right now i beleive would be a waste of time... i had a few it guys explain to me why Windows have so many viruses... its b/c everybody has one and 95% of the computer users are on windows, Apple, Linux, and whatever other homebrew make up the rest w/ apple owning the majority of that.... so in a nutshell, you infect and steal from the larger pot.... just my .02
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Old 07/02/2009, 11:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
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A virus is a program, right? So to write a virus, you would need a way to install it on your victim's phone. There was a serious security flaw that let you send someone an email which would install a program, but the update to 1.0.4 fixed that. If that hadn't been fixed, it would've been pretty easy to write a worm, although it would be hard for the worm to identify other Pre's to target, so it might not have gotten anywhere even if someone had done it.

Right now, no one has found a way to easily install even with the cooperation of the user, so it's pretty safe. Probably it will remain safe. If a security hole is identified it will probably be easier to patch the hole rather than create an additional program that searches for things exploiting it.

And then there will probably still be the issue that, without a large market share, and without any way to know from an email address or phone number what hardware it is using, it would be very hard to effectively propagate a worm or virus.
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Old 07/03/2009, 12:36 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by palandri View Post
With a windows operating system, programs and the the operating system are integrated. So a virus can be very damaging to a windows operating system, since the virus can attack the operating system itself, and effect other programs.

Programs in a Linux operating systems are not integrated into the operating system. Linux cores simply give programs a place to run on there own.

That's not to say a virus couldn't destroy your web browser on a Linux operating system, but that should be the only program effected.
That is a gross oversimplification and completely untrue. Linux is every bit as susceptible to viruses as Windows is. It's just not a very popular platform to develop them for since it's such a minimal percentage of users. And in it's default state, it generally has user and system privileges more separated than Windows.

This just means that an attacker would have to find a different vector in able to attack the system, such as a root account with no password, or some sort of phishing, which linux users are just as susceptible to as windows users.

Just like OSX, Linux can have viruses written for it. It has in the past, and it will in the future. It would, in fact, be insanely trivial to propagate a virus for WebOS 1.0.3 with the e-mail loophole, which is why they closed it in 1.0.4.

However, there really isn't much point in putting a virus scan on a mobile device. It is so resource constrained in the first place, that any additional layers of overhead would render it more or less unusable.

So just don't be stupid and don't worry about it. I do not have virus protection on any of my computers, windows or otherwise, and have never had a problem.
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Old 07/03/2009, 07:57 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I use AV software on my Winhose computers. Seems banner ads have trojans lately. My AV hits on them and allows me to delete without issue. I do not visit "seedy" sites and mostly use this netbook for forum browsing and email. I personally agree with some of the AV software manufacturers when they say that people that don't run AV software are the root of why so many people have to deal with viruses. I suggest download.com and search for AV software, click "free" on the drill-down menu. I will never go back to a paid AV program as they were resource hogs and let viruses in that were caught by the free AV.
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Old 07/05/2009, 04:04 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Great information guys...

But what about security? Can some A-hole track your IP while posting on forums such as this one? How vulnerable is the Pre and Sprint's network to these threats?
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Old 07/05/2009, 04:12 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Andromeda View Post
Great information guys...

But what about security? Can some A-hole track your IP while posting on forums such as this one? How vulnerable is the Pre and Sprint's network to these threats?
What threat do you face is some knows your IP?
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Old 07/05/2009, 04:23 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by mdmogren View Post
What threat do you face is some knows your IP?
Well I know a phone is nothing like a PC. But with an IP address, a rookie hacker can atleast attack your PC.
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