Updating ms windows xp

05-Oct-2017 03:05

While most of us have long since consigned Windows XP to the Recycle Bin of history, there are still plenty of PCs out there running Microsoft's long-since-defunct operating system.

But if the recent swathe of ransomware attacks which have brought the NHS and companies across the globe to a standstill tell us anything, it's that Windows XP has become something of a liability.

Many of the machines attacked today have been breached simply because the latest Windows updates have not been applied quickly enough, but there are still organizations that continue to run Windows XP despite the risks.

Previously called Windows Embedded POSReady, this OS is a special version of Windows XP designed for use in industrial systems, such as cash registers and ATMs.

Microsoft issued a “highly unusual” patch for Windows XP last month to help prevent the spread of the massive Wanna Cry malware.

At least 75,000 computers in 99 countries were affected by the malware which encrypts a computer and demands a 0 ransom before unlocking it.

The Wanna Cry ransomware has wreaked havoc across the NHS since appearing at the end of last week, blocking staff from accessing patient data.

It has also locked down computers across many other organisations, including Telefonica and Fed Ex, taking advantages of vulnerabilities in Windows XP - an operating system Microsoft launched in 2001 and withdrew full support for in 2015.“Seeing businesses and individuals affected by cyberattacks, such as the ones reported today, was painful,” explains Phillip Misner, a security group manager at Microsoft.