The countdown is on for Windows 7 users. On 14th January 2020, Microsoft will cease all support and security patching, just like they did with previous Windows versions. Naturally, you’re rather attached to your current operating system and not exactly leaping for joy at this news!
Unfortunately, the longer your computer goes without an upgrade, the higher the chance of a complete system breach. While you’re watching the count-down and thinking about scheduling an upgrade sometime soon, cyber-criminals are making plans of their own. As time progresses, they’ll actively target out-of-date systems and search for vulnerabilities.
Even the most stalwart Windows 7 user must finally upgrade, as continuing to use it will expose your computer to some pretty confronting risks, including:
Security risks: While Microsoft may have patched the gaps exploited during the Windows 7 lifetime, there are many more just waiting to be discovered. It gets worse: your antivirus program is unlikely to intercept these attacks. Hackers are extremely fast to exploit newly-discovered vulnerabilities and without Microsoft working just as fast to close them, the risk increases exponentially every time you turn the computer on.
Compliance risks: For business users, this is a big one. Many businesses are subject to conditions that require them to run an operating system that’s regularly patched. For those working with sensitive, legal or private data, this is even more important. Continuing to use an unsupported OS places not just the system security at risk, but also the entire business.
Software incompatibility: New applications are created exclusively for current operating systems. This means you can’t upgrade past the software you now have, and will soon be phased out of new updates and options across all application types.
Windows 7 End-of-Life: What This Means For You
The solution is quite simple: upgrade your computers to Windows 10 well before the Jan 14th deadline.
Windows 10 is the latest release and will give your upgrade investment the most value over time, as well as the best security Windows users have ever seen. Windows 7 will continue to work after Jan14th 2020, but every day you use it puts your system at increasingly higher levels of risk.