7’s End is Near
You’re standing in your office, look around… as you see employees working hard – take a peek at their screens. No, not to spy on them but to notice what Operating System their computers are currently on! If you see a Windows 7 screen… you know the one with a circular start button on the bottom left-hand side of the screen you are running behind!
Don’t panic now if you see one or two. No big deal.
Your entire office is on Windows 7?! Ok, now panic!
But don’t panic for too long. You still have a little bit of time but you do need to take action soon.
Microsoft will end support for Windows 7 and Server 2008 in January 2020. This is a few months away! They have been announcing it for a while and the IT industry has been shouting it from the rooftops.
We’ve been planning and budgeting these transitions with our clients over the last couple of years.
But now, as we close in on the fourth quarter of 2019 it’s game time.
So, what happens at the end of support? What does that mean? How potentially dangerous is it? Why should you pay attention to the words of this article and heed my advice?
What it means is that security patches will no longer occur for the operating system. Microsoft has thrown their hands up and said, it’s old, we’ve moved on and so should you. If you don’t, you’re on your own. This is dangerous because, without security patches from Microsoft, your machines are left open and vulnerable. Cybercriminals are always looking for ways to hack a computer and this just leaves the door open for them. It gets even more serious if you must abide by federal regulations such as HIPAA or GLBA. This change makes your network un-secure and in violation of the rules set by these regulations.
I’ve heard, “well I don’t need to abide by those rules, so I’ll be fine”. NOPE. It’s a huge risk to your business either way especially with all the ransomware attacks etc that are going on. So, if you value your data and if you expect your cyber-security liability policy to pay for any incidents that may happen, you need to upgrade.
So, if you have Windows 7 systems currently in use and you don’t have a replacement plan yet, get started.
We’ve taken this opportunity to evaluate upgrade versus replacement with our clients as well. Since you are being forced to make a change, might as well use this wisely. Older machines may be upgradable but the question we ask is will it run efficiently and will it be worth the investment (time and money). If the machine is older, out of warranty, reaching an end of life age then we’d suggest a replacement. If the machine is not so old, barely used, or was built with Windows 10 (so downgraded to Windows 7) we recommend an upgrade.
Either way, talk to your IT partner about next steps for you. Maybe this is a good time to get an overall evaluation of your systems and network. If change is a must, you might as well take a look at what else needs to change and rip the bandaid.
Don’t have an IT partner or you’re looking for a partner that will help you plan and budget things like this? Call us!
SabinoCompTech – Awesome IT for Business
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