As you may already be aware (and you can see from the count-down timer at the top of our website), Microsoft are ending support for many of their legacy pieces of software, including Microsoft Windows 7, Office Suite 2010, SQL 2008 and Server Standard 2008. ‘End of Extended Support’ relates to the specific date that Microsoft will cease providing automatic fixes, updates and online technical assistance. Should vulnerabilities in the software systems be discovered, such system will be targeted and exploited, as happened in the case with the NHS a few years ago with Windows XP issues publicised and then exploited.
Windows 7 and Server 2008 End of Support
On January 14th, 2020, Microsoft will no longer provide security updates or support to devices running their Windows 7, Server 2008 and Server 2008 R2 operating system. Networks that continue to utilise these software versions run major security and compliance risks on their networks and therefore planning to replace or upgrade these licenses is essential.
Although Windows 7 is now coming up to 10 years old, it is still extremely popular, and this end of extended support deadline will affect many organisations across the country. Unfortunately, not addressing this required operating system upgrade will lead to security vulnerabilities and non-compliance from a data handling perspective with your end user devices.
Server 2008 and 2008 R2
Microsoft are ending all extended support for the Windows 2008 and 2008 R2 server operating systems and the planning for this upgrade or replacement is essential. As with any server related project, planning the type of replacement your organisation requires, spec’ing the server/cloud capacity and resources plus the project roll out and disruption to your staff is a major task. The earlier this is considered and planned, the better.
So what to do next.
ESP Projects have been working behind the scenes to complete full End User Hardware audits for all of our supported clients and to identify those devices that are suitable for upgrading or unfortunately need to be replaced. Planning for this required update is essential and ESP have been working extremely hard to empower our clients to make any financial and operational decisions around the next steps for this IT requirement, including providing leasing options for the required purchases.
A question that is often asked is, “what if I continue to use Windows 7 or Server 2008”. The short and simply answer is that although these operating systems will continue to work, the device will become more and more vulnerable to security risks as the device will no longer receive security and feature updates from Microsoft. This will put you in a very weak position with the ICO, should any data breach occur. You should check your liability by visiting the ICO website – www.ico.org.uk
Planning for these operating system upgrades is vital to your network security and if you would like to discuss how ESP can support you with this, please do not hesitate to contact us on the following details: 0330 2020 118 / firstname.lastname@example.org.