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Obama Inauguration Protected by Windows XP

Now that Obama is the 44th President of the U.S., the security measures that were in place to ensure a smooth inauguration will still continue to be in force for some time.

Although all the security agencies involved in today's event won't be out in full force every day, the security for Obama's new presidency still demands a certain level of awareness.

What better way to ensure that everything goes smoothly than to use Windows XP on FBI intelligence machines.

It looks like the FBI is reluctant to move to Windows Vista for laptops.

The FBI was out in force today, with a list of high-tech anti-threat technologies, including a bomb vessel designed to contain a live bomb, and even allow it to explode if necessary. The FBI also had a mobile command center on site, where it coordinates and organizes on-site agents. Able to execute all commands and observations, the mobile FBI command center is a big armored trailer with laptops and other computer equipment inside.

If you wanted to build a secure setup, what would you personally use for the ultimate security? Would Windows XP suffice? Or would you use something along the lines of Linux or BSD, or even Mac OS X Leopard? Do you think you can lock down a Windows system as hard as one based on *nix?

  • igot1forya
    I doubt the OS is where the DOD wanted to spend the time/money to secure. Chances are they went with a better firewall IDS/IPS then spin the bottle on securing an operating system. No OS is 100% secure, it's best to prevent intrusion before the attacker can even get to your workstation's flaws.
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  • squatchman
    I hope last year's pwn2own event at least showed some people that OSX isn't where you want to be for secure computing.
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  • descendency
    More likely that Vista's "security improvements" are more idiot proofing and less actual security (well, idiots screw their computers up regularly).
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  • ckthecerealkiller
    descendencyMore likely that Vista's "security improvements" are more idiot proofing and less actual security (well, idiots screw their computers up regularly).You have no idea how correct you are....

    Ditto on Igot1, the real security measures are network not workstation based.
    Reply
  • jhansonxi
    Open source OSes are definitely safer but I wouldn't speculate about the FBI still using XP. It takes a long time for the security agencies to evaluate a software platform and as a large government organization they will have access to Vista's source code as per Microsoft's policy. They probably use multiple OSes as they have to be able to perform forensics on any system. The NSA even wrote a mandatory access control add-on for Linux that is part of most distros (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Security-Enhanced_Linux).
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  • All it takes is a competent IT staff and you can secure your OS. MAC OS X Leapord? Is that a joke? Lets not forget that you need to actually accomplish something, other than create youtube videos all day with your cute imovie hd, with your os. Windows is by far the most versatile and useful OS out there. There are a myriad of applications and uses for it, which is obviously why it is know upwards and backwards, which makes it a little more enticing to exploit, while at the same time making available an incredible number of different methods to secure it. Complaints about windows and are generally from the incompetent user and in the corporate world its because of ignorant and uneducated sys admins. Windows does not take on the aim to run your computer for you and make choices for you, which is why it is so successful. Mac OS is out of this world vulnerable, but where is the enticement to exploit it? there is very little! its user base is so limited and generally that of a college student/professor/grandmother/thinks they are cool because they own one, user. While they tend to make the most noise, they have yet to make a dent on the "pc" market. gg
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  • bachok83
    you'll never know.. looks can be deceiving. This is FBI for crying out loud... They may be using some XP theme on their Red Hat Linux.

    who knows.. :)
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  • ahmshaegar
    Are they using Windows XP everywhere? Or are these on the computers that the agents use? (for keeping track of intel and so on.) If these are the computers being used by agents, then it kind of makes sense they're using Windows XP. It's the most familiar thing to them. With the kind of jobs they're doing, the last thing they want to have to deal with is learning a different interface. They just want to get work done.
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  • ravenware
    It looks like the FBI is reluctant to move to Windows Vista for laptops.

    This is completely understandable. Their maybe several programs produced in house that simply may/would not function on vista.

    I am surprised they didn't use some form of UNIX or Linux.

    Reply
  • resonance451
    As understandable as a lot of this is, the article sounds suspiciously like a Vista vs. XP propaganda ploy. I'm going to be trusting and assume it's not.
    Reply