Security

Microsoft Warns Of Windows 7 Security Dangers As Support Draws To A Close

Sam Pudwell joined Silicon UK as a reporter in December 2106. As well as being the resident Cloud aficionado, he covers areas such as cyber security and government IT, with the aim of going to as many events as possible.

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Microsoft calls for action as Windows 7 support set to end in three years

Microsoft wants Windows 7 users to get rid of the outdated operating system, warning support will soon cease. It is encouraging users to move on to the more-secure Windows 10.

In a post on its German press site, the company noted that Windows 7 is coming to the end of its lifecycle, with support set to end in just under three years time on January 14, 2020.

So, after that point Microsoft will not provide any more security updates, general updates, or technical support, meaning users who continue to use the OS will be putting their security at risk.

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Early goodbye

Microsoft explained that Windows 7 “can no longer keep up with increased security requirements” and that, as many hardware manufacturers no longer provide drivers for the OS, “modern peripherals” such as printers are often no longer recognised,

“Today, it does not meet the requirements of modern technology, nor the high security requirements of IT departments,”said Markus Nitschke, head of Windows at Microsoft Deutschland. “As early as in Windows XP, we saw that companies should take early steps to avoid future risks or costs.”

The post goes on to warn of the “enormous dangers” businesses will face if they fail to upgrade and encourages corporate customers to “deal with the transition to a modern operating system in good time,” hence the rather early goodbye to one of its most popular operating systems.

It’s certainly responsible of Microsoft for warning users this far ahead and not a bad idea given what we’ve seen with other Windows variants. For example, both the Metropolitan Police and multiple NHS Trusts were found to still be using Windows XP last year, despite support ending way back in 2014.

Despite Windows 10 boasting significantly improved security and AI features, Microsoft was slammed by consumer watchdog Which? for its overzealous upgrade tactics in September and just last month admitted that the push had gone “too far.”

Quiz: Everything you need to know about Windows 10