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Green Hills: Linux Security Controversy, Part II

Apr 26, 2004, 15:15 (28 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Dan O'Dowd)

"Many of the objections to my assertion that the Linux operating system is unsafe for defense systems were based on the dangerous misconceptions that it is equally easy for foreign intelligence agents or terrorists to infiltrate malicious code into any operating system and that the many eyes looking at the Linux source code will find any malicious code infiltrated into Linux.

"The most critical software in a computer system is the operating system code that runs in the computer's privileged mode. Privileged-mode code controls all of the operations, communications, and security of the computer system. It has unrestricted access to anything in the computer. Privileged-mode code can read or write any data on any device. It can send or receive messages from any other computer system, disk drive, or monitor. It can do anything it wants with anything that the computer controls, it can turn (or not turn) the tank, fire (or not fire) the missile, transmit (or not transmit) a message..."

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