Two things happened to me this week that make you go Huh? Watched 60 Minutes this weekend and they had a segment on Confickr and worms attacking Windows. Seemed to be a huge advertisement for buying Symantec software. But I did not notice the Microsoft name being mentioned much. Microsoft Windows is the cause of the problem, poorly designed software has led too a multi-billion dollar industry of virus detection/prevention. I believe Symantec said on 60 Minutes that they update the virus database every 4 Minutes! But 60 Minutes does not place the blame, on Microsoft???
Yesterday my mother calls me up and says she talked to Verizon/Fios yesterday and had them remove a $9.00/month charge from her bill for virus protection. She was concerned that her computer had proper virus protection software on it. Since she is running Fedora 10 with SELinux limited privileged user I told her she was safe. Imagine Verizon is able to generate almost 100 dollars a year per customer in virus protection. It is like the Mafia Protection racket.
If you are using your computer as an Internet device there is little reason at this point not to use Linux, preferably Red Hat :^).
Now we all know that Linux can be attacked by Viruses. But I trust open source developers would fix the vulnerabilities quicker and linux is engineered better in the first place to prevent these attacks.
Finally tools like SELinux can step in to mitigate users accidentally installing Malware.
execmod, execstack, execmem, confined users, nsplugin confinement excetera.
If desktop Linux was ever to take off, it would be Symantec's worst nightmare. :^)