Say Goodbye to Windows XP

Tuesday April 08 2014 - , , , ,

As of today, 8th April 2014, Microsoft no longer supports Windows XP (unless you are a very large corporation and can afford to pay them a lot of money).

What that means to you, the end user, is that there will be no more support, no more fixes and, crucially, no more security updates.

Why is that a problem? It’s worked up to now, right? Nothing will change if you don’t change it, right? The problem is that the rest of the world changes. Hackers find new exploits and ways to compromise an operating system. Microsoft’s Security Response Team works constantly to detect and close these vulnerabilities in the form of security updates. Windows only stays secure because Microsoft actively updates Windows to close any new loopholes that are discovered. There will be no more of these security updates for Windows XP, so each new vulnerability that gets discovered will remain open forever. Over time, Windows XP will become a bigger and bigger security risk. Various estimates put the installed user base at about 38% of Windows users – that is a *huge* number of users! It represents a very appealing target for hackers and they are going to jump on the first unpatched vulnerability.

If you are still running Windows XP, especially if it has an internet connection, the time to upgrade is now, before it’s too late. An Internet connection isn’t the only way to get infected though – unplugging the cable may slow it down but it will not protect you forever!