For the last several newsletters we’ve been discussing the end of life issues regarding Windows XP and your current hardware (see past articles). Many of you have contacted us with questions concerning what all this means for your current antivirus software.
The Question: Will your current antivirus software still effectively protect your system while you continue to use Windows XP?
The Answer: It depends on what antivirus software you are using.
Microsoft Security Essentials: For a limited time, users will still be provided with antivirus â€œsignaturesâ€ which help to identify any malware that may attack a PC; however, Microsoft will not issue â€œsecurity patchesâ€ unless a user signs up for a subscription-style payment agreement. So Microsoft will continue (but only for a limited time) to let you know what’s out there in the way of viruses, etc., but will not actually protect you from those viruses unless you pay them.
Trend Micro: Knowing that their clients are struggling to navigate the XP demise, Trend has promised extended support of both Windows XP and Trend’s antivirus software (Titanium, OfficeScan and Worry Free Business Security) until January 30, 2017.
Other Third Party Vendors: AVG will provide anti-malware support for Windows XP, but they have not specified a time period.
If you are using any other antivirus software, it is important to check with your provider to confirm how they are handling XP security during this transitional time.
Finally, upgrade your browsers to the latest version (which is Internet Explorer 8 for XP) or change to Chrome or Firefox and get the latest versions to avoid the XP vulnerabilities from being exposed.
The Solution: It is critical for users to understand these are only stop-gap measures. Consistent and reliable protection only comes when your business updates to a more current operating system like Windows 7. Now is the time to come up with a plan and an implementation timeline. PCTech stands ready to partner with you through this process â€“ helping you find the right solution for your business with the least amount of hassle and downtime. Contact us to start this crucial process at 636-464-2400.