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Microsoft have issued a stark warning over security issues of non-supported operating systems. They confirmed that the Windows XP operating system will no longer be supported as of 8th April 2014.

Volume 15 of the companies Security Intelligence Report places special emphasis on the risk of running unsupported operating systems and software. It also highlights the security enhancements provided by newer Windows versions; Windows 8 in particular.

Through a threat analysis, covering over one billion consumer and enterprise PC systems around the world. Microsoft found that almost 17% of those featuring up-to-date real-time Microsoft security products were targeted by malware. The number of malicious programs were similar for Windows 8 and Windows XP but the latter computers were six times more likely to get infected by the malware. To drive its security point home, Microsoft noted the surge in malware infections after the end of support for Windows XP Service Pack 2. In the two years since then, infections have leapt by 66%, compared, to machines running Windows XP Service Pack 3. This version will no longer be supported from next April.

Tim Rains, director of Microsoft Trustworthy Computing said:

the company was keen to make users fully aware of how dangerous it is to use unsupported operating systems and software. Windows 8 is an example of a modern OS equipped with sophisticated security technologies designed to prevent cyber attackers from exploiting potential vulnerabilities.

The latest report provides data that clearly illustrates the dangers and importance of upgrading to newer, more secure operating systems.


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