Linux Vulnerability and Trojan Causing Headaches

by Ostatic Staff - Jan. 20, 2016

The news on everyone's front page today involves another Linux kernel flaw that allows a local user to gain root privileges. Along those same lines is a trojan recently discovered that takes screenshots and attempts to make recordings through your microphone. In other news, Jeff Hoogland explained why he chooses Ubuntu on which to base Bodhi and Peter Hutterer clarified the importance of the X.Org Foundation.

CVE-2016-0728 was made public recently and has already been patched in the kernel and many leading distributions. The bug has been present for nearly three years and allows local user applications to execute privileged kernel calls. Probably the reason it's being discussed so much is because the bug effects all architectures including ARM - which means smartphones. The Register said that it'd take a half hour to open the hole with a Core i7 and so it'd take a looong time on an ARM phone. Anywho, updating your kernel is the prescribed antidote.

Another problem making the rounds is a trojan designed to infiltrate Linux servers and take screenshots and audio recordings every 30 seconds and send them to a central server. The audio code isn't fully functional though. The cure is to run Dr.Web Anti-virus for Linux according to the researchers who work for Dr.Web of Russia. A better solution will probably come out soon.

Jeff Hoogland today said he chooses Ubuntu over other distributions like Debian and Arch because it "strikes a good balance" between stability and new software. He also said Ubuntu inherits and contributes to a high degree of hardware support success. Ubuntu has a large repository of software and Debian picks up the slack. In addition, Ubuntu is supported by lots of third party vendors. He summed, "I feel the Ubuntu base currently make the best choice for Linux Desktops."

And finally today, Peter Hutterer said don't plan's funeral just yet. Besides server and client projects, the Foundation supports other projects like Mesa, drm, and even Wayland. So, hold your horses there those saying to just let die.