JACKSON, Miss.- Microsoft ended Windows XP support Tuesday. This could be dangerous for companies and yourself, leaving your computer exposed to potential malicious attacks.
An estimated 30 percent of computers being used by businesses and consumers around the world are still running the 12-year-old operating system.
The Window’s website stated, “Microsoft provided support for Windows XP for the past 12 years. But the time came for us, along with our hardware and software partners, to invest our resources toward supporting more recent technologies so that we can continue to deliver great new experiences.”
With the support ending this means, technical assistance for Windows XP is no longer available, including automatic updates that help protect your PC.
Director of Engineering for Telesouth Broadcasting Houston McDavitt said, “This opens the doors for scams and hackers. Everyone knows Windows XP support is ending, so don’t accept upgrades from any emails. You’ll end up downloading things that aren’t Windows 8, but malware or spyware.”
For those that decide not to upgrade the software the site said, “If you continue to use Windows XP now that support has ended, your computer will still work but it might become more vulnerable to security risks and viruses. Internet Explorer 8 is also no longer supported, so if your Windows XP PC is connected to the Internet and you use Internet Explorer 8 to surf the web, you might be exposing your PC to additional threats. Also, as more software and hardware manufacturers continue to optimize for more recent versions of Windows, you can expect to encounter more apps and devices that do not work with Windows XP.”
XP was a popular and durable software that stayed around longer than expected and many chose to stick with it instead of upgrading to Windows Vista, Windows 7 or 8 because of XP’s dependability. Most PC’s more than five years old are probably using Windows XP.
Most industry experts say they recognize that the time for Microsoft to end support for such a dated system has come, but the move poses both security and operational risks for the remaining users. In addition to home computers, XP is used to run larger facilities and smaller businesses.
“Because of the dependability and reliability of XP and the platform of software’s made after XP haven’t been proven to be as reliable, XP is still a solid platform to operate on as far as an office environment.” McDavitt says, “The biggest problem you’re going to have is once the browsers begin to update, there will be webpages that won’t pull up on XP anymore. Eventually everyone will have to switch. The software won’t last forever, none of them ever do.”