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November 19, 2011

on rootkits

Hi, newbie here. I've been reading up on rootkits (via Google), but there's so much on detection and removal and hardly anything, if at all on how they get into a computer. So...how DO they get into a computer? Is it as easy as, say, clicking on a link, clicking on a link that leads to a pop-up ad, a pop-up ad somehow getting past your browser defenses, or accidentally going to a site marked as red by WOT - and you're still in danger even if you get out of suspicious sites quickly? I know viruses find it hard to survive in Linux, but is it different for rootkits? Say, once they enter, they can punch a hole straight into your root account? How much of a threat do they pose in the Linux community (are new rootkits being created every year, say? Or are they as rare as Linux viruses?)?

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