Businesses must prepare for end of Windows XP and Office 2003 support

Thursday 18 April 2013

Businesses are being urged to prepare for the withdrawal of support for the Windows XP operating system and Office 2003 program suite.

Microsoft will end support for Windows XP and Office 2003 on April 8th 2014, meaning companies have less than a year to prepare for an upgrade.

According to IT analyst Gartner, more than 15 per cent of midmarket and large enterprises will still have Windows XP running on at least ten per cent of their PCs after this date.

The firm explained that not having support means that organisations' PCs could be vulnerable to attack.

"New vulnerabilities are always being found, and vulnerabilities that are found in more current products could affect Windows XP and Office 2003," Gartner noted.

"Any unpatched device can be vulnerable to attack. Even if a device is only a private network and has no internet access, another device, even one running a supported product, can be infected with malware outside the private network and can bring it onto the private network, infecting other devices."

The analyst said many applications will no longer be supported while running on Windows XP, meaning organisations will be on their own to resolve issues and problems.

Find out more about the latest Microsoft operating system - Windows 8.

Posted by Dan Smith