Microsoft makes it fairly clear how the company will eliminate support for one of the most popular computer operating systems they ever produced, Windows XP, on April 8th. The Redmond giant will continue to supply anti-malware signatures to the applications, which includes Microsoft Security Essentials, until July 2015. Nevertheless, there’s a particular group who needs to be far more concerned about the deadline provided by Microsoft – ATM operators.
As outlined by BusinessWeek, many of the 420,000 ATM machines operating in the United States are run by Windows XP. It’s not only the U.S., almost 95 percent of ATMs found around the world operates on Windows XP, and with the April 8 deadline, there is a pretty solid reason for many of them to panic now. ATMs are among the most often utilized technological machines running a operating system, and with the end of support date for Windows XP coming near, owners have little they are able to do, including upgrading the operating system from Windows XP, possibly to Windows 7.
However, it is not as easy as its appears. Upgrading the present machines to Windows 7 normally takes its toll. Many ATMs run obsolete hardware that isn’t efficient at running the Windows 7, meaning owners must upgrade the hardware of the existing machines before April 8th. Although Microsoft guaranteed the anti-malware support for one more year, there’s still a possibility of risks as Microsoft won’t provide any updates to patch any security loophole that could exist within the operating system itself. And, upgrading the current hardware might not be the most cost effective thing to do as it may cost the companies thousands of dollars to ensure the hardware is capable of running Windows 7.
Suzanne Cluckey, the editor of ATM Marketplace, states “A lot of ATMs will have to either have their components upgraded or be discarded altogether and sold into the aftermarket – or just junked.”
While people who will disregard the deadline and try to operate will be more vulnerable to malware attacks. Although people are secured in such scenarios such as ATM frauds by the standard protections banks offer to ATM users, there’s still an enormous risk for the company itself.