We hope that everyone is well aware that after April the 8th 2014 Microsoft will no longer be providing updates and security patches for Windows XP Service Pack 3 and Office 2003. This potentially creates a security vulnerability for those people still running Windows XP inside their networks.

The reason is that even a single Windows XP machine in a network may lead to wider security issues post April 8. There is no reason for the vast majority of users to be still running Windows XP and thankfully most aren’t, but there are still a few. If you elect to remain on Windows XP and that machine is compromised it may provide a gateway into your network that could be utilized to exploit other machines.

There is of course a cost with any upgrade but that cost is minor when compared to the costs of a security breech. There are also so many new ways to purchase software these days to keep reduce the outlay. Services like Office 365 offer the ability to purchase the latest version of Office software as a subscription. There is also the option to purchase the software via a volume license and potentially receive other benefits as part of that.

If you plan to continue to use XP it is vital that you keep it off the Internet and ensure that any anti virus software is updated (this will be hard unless you have a networked version of anti virus software). You should also minimize the contact these machines have with USB devices. You should also be looking to update the machine as soon as possible to limit your risk.

Correct Solutions will continue to help people using Windows XP but each situation will have to be considered on a case by case basis because it is very hard to support systems which no longer have support from the vendor. In short, not staying up to date is going to probably cost you more than staying up to date. Remember, all it takes is one compromise to potentially make your whole network vulnerable and the underground hacking community is no doubt poised to target unsupported Windows XP systems after April 8.