Microsoft have announced the end-of-life for a collection of older software platforms. Much like the cessation of support for Windows XP back in 2014, Microsoft will no longer provide updates & security patches to a range of software deemed to be reaching the end of its serviceable life – helping to drive users toward more modern & secure platforms. This is not only a commercial move (to ultimately upsell customers to the newer platforms), but also to ensure IT users are benefiting from up to date, secure platforms that comply with today’s best practice when it comes to cyber security and performance.
During 2020 the following all reach the end of their live, starting with Windows 7 in the January:
- Windows 7
- Small Business Server 2011
- Windows Server 2008 R2
- Exchange 2010
- Office 2010
What does this mean to my business?
With an enormous volume of businesses globally relying on at least one of these platforms, the chance of this news having an impact on you & your business is very high. As mentioned above, the end-of-life of these systems means that Microsoft will no longer be generating software patches and security updates, resulting in the systems being far less secure.
With the systems immediately becoming vulnerable from cyber security threats, and therefore increasing their risk of attack & potential loss of personal data, they will become automatically non-compliant to GDPR legislation.
How can I find out if i’ll be affected?
If you have replaced the entirety of your IT system within the past 3 or 4 years, there’s a good chance you’re in the clear. Those businesses using at least Windows 8 or 1-0 across their laptops & desktops, and operating with background cloud systems, such as Office 365 and Azure, will most likely have moved away entirely from the list of software being culled in 2020.
If you still rely on a server that’s potentially 5-6+ years old, use little or no cloud platforms, and have PCs that are 4+ years old then there’s a strong chance that your business is at risk and needs to start planning & budgeting now for this change.
How can I find out whether we’re using this software in the office?
There are a few tell tale signs to help identify whether you are reliant on any of these software platforms.
What do I need to do?
Keeping ahead of such large-scale technology changes will not only protect your business, but ensure you can time & budget for the inevitable IT refresh project. Planning both the potential disruption and cost at a time that suits you, as opposed to getting caught out; rushing then to complete the work upon reaching the deadline, (or more dangerously), after the deadline when you’ll have become non-GDPR compliant and potentially at high-risk of, or worse, have already suffered from a cyber hack & loss of data.
Seek advice from IT professionals to plan & prepare. Get in touch today for free advice & guidance – firstly to identify if you are at risk, and help budget for the affected systems that will need upgrading / replacing, or how to implement cloud technology to keep your business ahead.
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We can help. We offer free assessments to businesses across London from our central office.
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