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It's Not Me, It's You: Why Businesses Are Ditching Old Windows OS To Bolster Security

16 August 2017 14:57

We've witnessed some hugely damaging and high profile ransomware attacks over the past year - and Windows 10 is feeling knock-on effects in their aftermath. Here's why businesses are ditching the old operating systems in an attempt to bolster their security.

An individual using a Windows OS tablet.

Some of the classic and most loved versions of Windows - including XP and Vista - have experienced a pretty dark year to date.

The recent Wannacry and Petrwrap attacks set out to exploit some of their biggest vulnerabilities, and have done a pretty good job in doing so. The huge Wannacry ransomware attack hit 150 countries around the world and brought the NHS crashing down to its knees, sending a cyber security shock wave that even trembled people outside of the industry.

That’s exactly why almost two-thirds of businesses are now jumping ship from the old, ransomware-prone versions, to find a new love story in the form of Windows 10. Will changing to Windows 10 stop businesses paying for a Ransomware demand?

In fact, the pressure has sprung up so quickly that Windows 10 is now being used by a higher number of companies than that of XP, which was a whole different story just a few short months ago.

But it’s not all good news. A newly released survey by Spiceworks painted a pretty clear picture as to just how many businesses are still yet to upgrade to the up-to-date and safer version:

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Despite the growing use of Windows 10, the actual share of computers running the OS is still pretty low (and miles behind the legendary Windows 7). The unsupported operating system of Windows XP is still running on 11% of desktops and laptops in businesses.

But better news for the world of cyber security is that more and more companies are taking steps to bolster their security with OS (even if it is at a relatively slow pace). It was only in March this year that 9% of businesses were running Windows 10, and 14% were still using Windows XP. Now, XP is no longer in the driving seat, and its decline looks sure to continue.

Windows 10 now boasts a tally of 50 million business users -- a number which Microsoft seems pretty happy with. Add to that the growing level of (much needed) cyber security investment, then the chances of this number growing seem pretty healthy.

But for the cyber security professionals of the world, the current number of businesses still using unsupported versions of Windows is still far too high and offers far too many avoidable threats.

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