Can Ubuntu get Viruses?

Most users who use Ubuntu migrate from Windows, where they face many viruses that are often downloaded along with random files from the internet. Now when you are using Ubuntu, you may be wondering if it could also get infected with Viruses and if it can, how does it work? Well, a virus on Windows works differently and could cause havoc without the user’s permission which isn’t the case in Ubuntu.

This article aims to reveal that Ubuntu does get viruses and how secure Ubuntu is in dealing with viruses.

What is a Virus?

A virus is a piece of code mainly used to destroy or steal data, and it runs in the background, making it difficult to spot by the ordinary computer user. It is usually transmitted mostly through pirated data like movies, songs, or games.

The main effects of a virus on the operating system include:

  • Relatively slower performance
  • Data loss
  • Crashes
  • Unidentified programs taking all of the resources.

Ubuntu and Viruses

Since I’ve been using Ubuntu, I haven’t encountered any viruses. Still, there are some of them, like Kaiten, Bad Bunny, Bliss, and many more, whose details can be read on the official Ubuntu forum.

The viruses in Ubuntu cannot do much because of the permissions on directories and sometimes the root access, so if you’re using the system as a non-root user, the virus’s power is zero, and it cannot do any harm to your data.

Meanwhile, in Windows, the hacker can use the image, audio, or video, which is easy to do. Still, you will need to execute the virus in Ubuntu, which can change the system configuration later.

How Secure is Ubuntu From Viruses?

The Linux kernel is based on Unix, which has access to the whole system. While navigating through the directories, you may have been prompted to enter the password to protect your data from illegal access.

Another reason for less Ubuntu being secure is that there are not as many users as Windows, so unlike that, you will encounter fewer viruses compared to the operating systems.

Does Ubuntu Come With a Firewall?

Yes, Ubuntu has a built-in firewall utility called “uncomplicated firewall” or “UFW”, which can easily be used to configure the firewall either from the GUI or commands:

$ sudo ufw enable

Read more about UFW utility here.

Which is More Secure, Linux or Windows?

When someone asks me what my choice is for a more secure OS between Linux and Windows, I’d always go with Linux for the following reasons.

  • Windows has more users than Linux, which is like candy for hackers; thus, there are more viruses.
  • Most Linux users are experienced programmers and developers, so they know what they are doing, which isn’t the case with Windows
  • Linux is faster as there are fewer running programs in the background, like Antivirus, which isn’t even required in any distro of Linux.

That’s all from the guide to dealing with viruses.


While Ubuntu is generally considered to be a secure and stable operating system, it is still possible for it to be infected with a virus. Especially if you download and install software from untrusted sources, or if you do not keep your system up to date with the latest security patches. Linux and its distros are more secure than Windows or Mac as they provide extraordinary security measures against viruses. This is a thorough guide if Ubuntu can get viruses and how you can avoid them.