If we suppose that an attacker has a zero-day vulnerability for a major browser, and can exploit this vulnerability. How can a Linux/Ubuntu user secure themselves from downloading malware (like keyloggers or other stuff that can can access to user's OS / escalate privileges) and gain execution a user's system?

2 Answers 2


If an attacker has a sandbox-bypassing 0day exploit, there is little you can do. The best way of preventing this from happening is having good web-browsing hygiene.

Things you can do to limit your risk of infection:

  • Run an Add blocker (advertisements are often targetted as they're widespread across different websites)
  • Run no-script plugin (to prevent unwanted redirection)
  • Don't visit dodgy websites, but only visit reputable websites
  • Try to use SSL as much as possible
  • I think that does not help me because I suppose this attack can be executed on a provider-side... So no any strong options?
    – Dmitry
    Mar 9, 2015 at 12:26
  • 1
    No, there just isn't a way to protect you from not being exploited with a 0day. That's why it's a 0day :p Mar 9, 2015 at 12:27

If the exploits triggers an arbitrary code execution, you are compromised as soon as you read the trapped webpage. Since it's a 0-day there are no strict way of detecting the attack, or avoiding it (no patch, no known signature, no known behaviours)

The possible ways to avoid this would be:

  • running an resident anti-virus that can monitor your computer behaviour and block suspicious activities (large download, large upload, disk access to certain "critical" path, ...) using heuristics to block these
  • running your browser from a sandboxed environment so that if something gets compromised it's the sandbox
  • applying a least privilege policy, so that your browser runs with the lowest level of privileges it needs
  • having the rest of your system up-to-date to avoid attack chains that could ultimately lead to having a full control over the system
  • What chance that in deep underground are selling or using for self needs are 0-day vulnerability for Firefox or Chrome browsers?
    – Dmitry
    Mar 9, 2015 at 12:38

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