Posted by Christopher Sherman on November 25, 2013
- Migrate to Windows 7 or 8 posthaste. Microsoft has come a long way in preventing certain classes of attacks, such as bootkit and rootkit attacks. In fact, Microsoft has told us that Windows XP is 21 times more likely to get infected with malware than Windows 8.1. To help our clients understand the pros and cons of Windows 8.1 security, I recently published a guide on this very topic.
- Buy some extra time. For those that can afford it, Microsoft will offer “custom support” in the form of XP security patches past the April 8 deadline. I’ve spoken with a number of organizations that determined that it would be cheaper to pay this premium than to migrate away from XP. Of course, this is just prolonging the inevitable; custom support will not be available forever.
- Isolate tricky XP-dependent applications through virtualization. Applications that must run on Microsoft XP can be virtualized and hosted internally with all of the traditional safeguards. Also, for those servers running XP that cannot be easily upgraded to Microsoft’s Server 2008/2012, Server 2003 can be used in its place as a temporary solution and will likely cause fewer application dependency problems.
- Do nothing. Is your data really that valuable to hackers? HIPAA and PCI regulations only matter if you get caught. Might be time to also think about updating your résumé.
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