Microsoft last week ended support for the persistently popular Windows XP, and the move could put everything from the operations of heavy industry to the identities of everyday people in danger.
It immediately became clear that a number of users, both from government institutions and corporations, including banks, were under severe security threats.
There will be no more security updates or technical support for the Windows XP operating system as well as no independent software vendor support and hardware manufacturer support for products running on Windows XP. Security updates patch vulnerabilities that could be exploited by malware and help keep users and their data safer.
“Computers running Windows XP after April 8, 2014, should not be considered to be protected, and it is important that you migrate to a current supported operating system such as Windows 8.1 so that you can receive regular security updates to protect their computer from malicious attacks,” read a statement from Microsoft, re-echoed by Uganda’s National Computer Emergency Response Team (National CERT) on Friday.
But it has since emerged that most of the banks in Uganda today still use the now unsupported Operating System to power their ATMs.
Microsoft East Africa’s, Dennis Kahindi, revealed that just three banks in the country have upgraded their operating systems. There are 27 banks in the country.
Similarly, support and updates for Office 2003 is no longer available. Office 2003 products no longer receive the following:
- Assisted support
- Online content updates
- Software updates from Microsoft Update
- Security updates to help protect your PC from harmful viruses, spyware, and other malicious software, which can steal your personal information.
Although you will still be able to start and run Microsoft Windows XP and Microsoft Office 2003, have to upgrade to newer versions to get continuing support and updates. This should be accomplished by December 2014.
An estimated 30 percent of computers being used by businesses and consumers around the world are still running the 12-year-old operating system.