Tag Archives: Windows XP

How Unpatched Software Give Way To Data Breaches?

It is a fact that IT related business is growing by leaps and bounds, and has changed the usage of organizational devices significantly within the last decade. With the growth of business, it has become essential to have some security measures. IT professionals have warned about risks associated with hyper-connectivity. Enterprises face great risks because the shortcomings of unpatched software are exposing data to cyber crime attacks. Therefore, it is the need of the hour to use advanced systems for data security.

Windows XP has lost its value due to security issues and instabilities which are associated with the operating system. When an OS developer like Microsoft cannot provide patches and critical updates to cope with security issues, the need for a new and well-defined operating system emerges.

What are the consequences of data breaches when complying with HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act)?

HIPAA Breach Rule

HIPAA is an act related to accountability and health insurance portability. In order to give maximum protection and privacy to health information, federal law has set some rules and regulations. OCR (Office for Civil Rights) is responsible for enforcing security law. For data security, OCR gives notification to organizations when certain information is breached. When businesses do not apply latest software patches, customers could get affected by data breaches and their social security numbers and/or credit card numbers could be stolen; and as a result, HIPAA penalty could be levied. Organizations have been fined by OCR because many have become the victim of malware caused by failure in selecting software patches.

It is notable that HIPAA or OCR does not inform organizations to keep their software updated. When companies do not pay attention to software flaws and keep on working with patching software, issues such as data breaches become unavoidable.

How to Run System Smoothly?

To check data security, it is significant to use vigilant approach and observe applications of third-party against protection vulnerabilities. Unsecure data can be the result of supportive software or operating system that is functioning in the environment. To cope with data issues, security updates and advanced patches should be applied. For a small business or an enterprise, assistance of IT administrator is the only solution to get peace of mind.

In a nutshell, the penalty of data breaches should not be only in form of levying fines, but there must be some rules to meet the demands of industry. Organizations know methods to find out security risks and satisfactory solutions. In other words, patch your software and use updates to keep your data safe and secure. Organizations can improve ways of data protection by using cloud computing. As compared to public cloud, private cloud using companies are much more satisfied with security of data.

Chinese Government Continue Using Windows XP

The Chinese government is attempting to patch potential security flaws in the Windows XP operating system after it reached its end of life on 8th April 2014.

As the end of life has been reached for this operating system which is 13 years old, no new security updates are released by Microsoft which leaves those that are still using the operating system vulnerable to cyber-attacks.

Senior official Yan Xiaohong stated, “Security problems could arise because of a lack of technical support after Microsoft stopped providing services, making computers with XP vulnerable to hackers.”

The reason why the Chinese government is attempting to create its own patches is because they deem the price to upgrade the machines using the XP operating system to Windows 8 as being too expensive.

At the moment, Windows 8 costs 888 yuan (£84) in China. The Chinese government is keen to avoid the increased procurement costs and therefore want to continue to use Windows XP.

Chinese security providers have already released patches for the XP operating system which are currently being appraised by the Chinese government.

Yan Xiaohong stated, “The government is conducting appraisal of related security products and will promote use of such products to safeguard users’ information security”

At the moment, it is reported that nearly 70% of all computers in China use the Windows XP operating system whilst this figure is as little as 18% in the US.

This means that there are a huge number of computers that are still running on XP and leaves the users more vulnerable to cyber-attacks which could have unprecedented results.

Regardless of what operating system you use, it is vital that data is protected by utilising a robust backup solution. By having the latest security updates downloaded and applied to your machine does reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of a cyber-attack but doesn’t rule it out completely. Therefore, by having a robust backup solution in place, you can be sure that you can recover your data in the desired state, no matter what happens.

Have you upgraded from Windows XP? Do you think Microsoft should have continued to support Windows XP?

Scammer Swoop in on Windows XP

It didn’t take long, and was always inevitable but numerous scammers and con artists are out to make a quick buck by advertising extended support and compatibility solutions for Windows XP machines. Such adverts have started to appear on you-tube and websites.

Among the range of applications that are being pushed are “Media Centre” keygen tools designed to harm the performance of computers.

Christopher Boyd who is a Malware Intelligence Analyst at Malwarebytes and former Director of Research at FaceTime Security Labs and threat researcher at GFI Software believes that keygens should be avoided altogether as you never really know what you are downloading.

Boyd stated, “Keygens are something you should really avoid, as more often than not you never know quite what you’ll end up with. As for XP themed ‘setup files’, those links too us to the usual selection of surveys and ringtone offers.”

Boyd added “Take care with the last minute surge of XP themed downloads and offers – whether on social networks, forums or video sharing sites, a lot of what you’re going to see over the coming will probably not do you any favours. XP may be dead and gone in terms of updates, but that doesn’t mean pitfalls booby trap have followed suit.”

As Windows XP is no longer officially supported by Microsoft, no operating system upgrades will be released and therefore leaves the machine highly vulnerable. Virus warnings are still available but little can be done to protect the machine.

If you persist on using Windows XP rather than upgrading to a newer and supported version, it is advisable to be very careful with what you download. It is inevitable that more and more adverts claiming to offer extended support and compatibility solutions will start to appear in an attempt to fool people. Do not fall for these adverts and if you feel that you need to use a supported platform, upgrade your operating system to a newer version. This will give you a much better chance to ensure that your data remains safe and out of the hands of devious scammers and con artists.

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