This coming April 8th the monthly scheduled Windows updates will be released for Windows XP, 7, 8, and the different versions of Office. But it’s worth mentioning they will be the last ones for Windows XP and Office 2003. On that date the official support for Windows XP and Office 2003 ends, so there will be no more updates after that. For those users still using Windows XP and Office 2003, what does that mean?
Don’t worry, your computer won’t explode, or stop working. BUT, in the never ending fight between good and evil, how does this translate? The bad guys (hackers) are always looking for vulnerabilities in Microsoft products in order to subvert computers. And Microsoft is always playing catch by devising and implementing updates to remedy the vulnerabilities found by the hackers. So what do you think it’s going to happen when Microsoft stops updating Windows XP and Office 2003?
Well, it’s predictable that there will be an invigorated effort to find and exploit new vulnerabilities in these programs, thus making users of it more likely to get infected with malware that will successfully exploit said vulnerabilities. And while there are actions that can be taken to mitigate that possibility (such as implementing my security model) the truth is, the security level will be lower for system running on Windows XP or with Office 2003 installed, after April.
Once again, I recommend upgrading to Windows 7 (not 8, 8.1 or 8.1 Update 1). And chances are, if your computer is as old as Windows XP, that it means a new computer as well. In any case, if you were playing with the idea of doing this, now it’s the time to do it.