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Which operating system is the most secure?

There are a number of factors to consider when it comes to choosing a secure operating system. Here are some points for people who are looking for a new or more secure operating system:

  • If you're in healthcare you need to stay HIPAA compliant. Running an outdated or unsupported OS could put your compliance at risk. Windows XP and Vista are currently no longer supported by Microsoft, which means you will no longer receive security updates to patch vulnerabilities or fix bugs. We provided the current Windows lifecycle below:

Windows lifecycle chart

  • with that said, a regularly updated and patched operating system is a secure system! Always download the latest version of your OS when prompted. "Patch Tuesday" is the unofficial term for when Microsoft releases security patches. Apple releases new updates every few weeks. A full list of Apple security updates can be found here.

  • Apple operating systems have flaws. The belief that Apple computers are safer compared to Windows is now a myth. With the overwhelming popularity of Apple products over the past several years, they have become increasingly targeted by hackers.

  • Linux is open-source OS which means it's much more versatile, and can be customized for users who have more tech experience. Linux is comprised of different parts to keep the system running. There are free versions based on a user's computer skills. Linux secures its systems through privileges. Linux does not offer full admin access, which means if malware gets into a system, it's usually only restricted to an individual device. Linux isn't user-friendly at first, but once you learn the system, the easier it is to use.

While there is no "best" or "most secure" operating system, it really boils down to how you plan on using it for your business and what your employees are most familiar with. Regardless of which system you use, make sure you keep your OS updated.

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