Microsoft will no longer be supporting Windows XP after April 8, 2014. Every XP machine should be upgraded and all of the XP data should be backed up by April 1. Everyone should migrate to newer operating systems if they still seem to be working fine.
Biggest issues, SECURITY! According to Microsoft Security Blog, after April 8, people using Windows XP “will no longer receive new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free or paid assisted support options, or online technical content updates.”
Cybercriminals know this and cannot wait. If you know about this information and are preparing your clients, you can bet that hackers are right there with you, if not already ahead of the curve.
How do you protect Windows XP customers?
- If you do not already, make sure that you backup to a USB key, USB Drive or online. Include all critical, business data that you cannot afford to lose. This is one of the most important steps to ensure data is protected.
- Use archiving rules to protect in case of an attack. If you are concerned about possible data corruption or a cyber-attack such as a virus, strong archiving rules can be your best defense. Archiving rules are only set to keep one or two versions of a file, it could be possible for the corrupt version to replace the clean version on our servers. If this is the case, the client is left with no usable, restorable data.
- Stop backups from running as soon as you realize that the attack has occurred. If the attack has already happened, or may still be happening, possibly unnoticed, if backup keeps running nightly, it increases the chance that the usable files on our servers are being replaced. Once the virus has been removed and any fallout has been resolved, start backups again.
- Ensure that you are following compliance (HIPAA, Sarbanes-Oxley, etc.) regulations. While 365 iT SOLUTIONS will continue to support Windows XP, not everyone is. Due to Microsoft listing it as an unsupported operating system, which greatly increases the potential risk from hackers, this may stop your client from being in compliance with certain regulations.
- Make sure that your antivirus is as up to date as possible, and scan often. With Microsoft no longer providing security updates, your own security measures become much more important. Prior to April 8, make sure your systems are as secure as possible, by running up to date antivirus programs, keeping up with XP related news, and scanning file directories often. Just because Microsoft will not keep the system safe, doesn’t mean you can’t do your best to protect it. Just remember though, with Windows not patching any inherent flaws in the operating system, their computer will still be at risk.
If have you have any questions about what this means, please contact 365 iT SOLUTIONS and we can help your transition be as smooth and seamless as possible.
365 iT SOLUTIONS is Toronto’s leading iT consulting firm. We offer industry leading Managed IT Services, IT Support, IT Outsourcing, Remote IT Support, Cloud Services, Cloud Storage and VoIP services to the Toronto, Mississauga, Markham, Concord, Richmond Hill and surrounding GTA areas.
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