The end of an era – Windows XP

Support for Windows XP officially ended on the 8th of April. (We talked about what this means last year in this article.)

However, Microsoft estimates there are more than 1,000,000 PCs across Australia and New Zealand still running Windows XP. These devices are will become increasingly vulnerable to cybercriminals. Their sick aim in life is to take advantage of businesses running software on machines that have little or no up-to-date security in place.

We know that many Abtrac clients are still using XP.

The 5 key risks identified by Microsoft in continuing to run XP are the following:

  1. Business disruption: There are no new security updates being shipped for XP. Malware could infect such computers making them run very slowly, or stop working altogether. When going on line, such PCs may be constantly re-directed to malicious websites.
  1. Financial risk: Taking advantage of vulnerabilities, Cyber criminals could use spyware to steal usernames and passwords, credit card details, and bank account information.
  1. Lost business data: Data on infected PCs could be corrupted or deleted altogether. At-risk data could include either system or user-created files including marketing databases, customer and supplier lists, financial accounts and tax records.
  1. Damage to company reputation: Infected computers could be used to send spam emails and propagate viruses to other PCs, including PCs external to the organisation.
  1. Incompatible hardware and software: New PC peripherals such as printers and scanners may no longer work with Windows XP. New software may not run on Windows XP.

If you are still running XP machines the best option is to plan to migrate to a modern operating system like Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 ASAP. These operating systems have a decade of evolved security mitigation’s built in that XP doesn’t have.

Then make sure you act on the plan. If you want to discuss a hassle-free way of moving away from Windows XP, please contact us here at Abtrac.

We will be pleased to respond.