High Security OS – Whonix

Whonix is a new entrant in the world of operating systems that ensures high security and reliability. It is an open source operating system built on Debian platform and inherits the DNA of UNIX. This operating system was developed with an intention to provide its users with a perfectly secure and virtually impenetrable platform. Designers of Whonix claim to have achieved this goal and have ample evidences to prove their success.


Security on the Internet has always been a matter of concern and users have been victims of  security breaches and cyber crimes. Privacy becomes all the more important these days, especially to those who wish to remain isolated from the “public” crowd in the Internet. Whonix is a perfect den for this category of users as its USP is “isolation”. The OS cuts off all intrusions and prevents external access of user’s data, location, IP address or any connection-specific details.


Whonix puts forward the concept of “an operating system inside an operating system”. Security and anonymity is ensured by encapsulating the working operating system with a layer of security provided by another host operating system. The host operating system works using TOR anonymity network architecture. Developers claim that this layer of security would help the OS totally prevent DNS security leaks. Even a malware with root privileges cannot drill in and capture details including location and IP address. This makes Whonix one of the strongest and most efficient member of the Internet Security Defence League too.


To know more about Whonix’s security mechanism, we need to understand the concept of “Security by Isolation”. Other operating systems and platforms expose users to malware and intrusions and then fight against them. Whonix isolates its software and users from the evil effects of the Internet by encapsulating and rerouting all communication and data transfer. This image would explain the stream isolation mechanism implemented by Whonix.


Image Courtesy  : www.whonix.org


The TOR network architecture implemented in the system works either by rerouting or blocking incoming and outgoing network communication. It is handled and supported by voluntary participants who create a network of virtual paths. Each incoming and outgoing communication will be rerouted through these private paths, making it impossible for intruders and malware to backtrack or tap them. From a technical point of view, working with Whonix is as straight forward as working with a Vanilla Linux installation. The features and functionality of Whonix are identical to the ones available in other Linux installations. Whonix does not limit its users or restrict any functionality that is available in a Debian Linux version. For instance, an installation of a service or an application can be performed by following exactly the same steps and commands used in any other Linux version.


Image Courtesy :  www.virtualthreat.com


The security aspect of Whonix OS is still being analyzed and researched. TOR networks are also being scrutinized currently, due to the over utilization of features and the anonymity concept. We can expect Whonix to solve this gap and provide a safe, secure and reliable platform to work on.


For more details, visit GitHub.