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b2ap3_thumbnail_windows400We hope that this isn’t the first time you’ve heard about Microsoft ending support for their popular Windows XP OS on April 8, 2014. Microsoft has been warning users of this “death date” for years, yet we still come across businesses and consumers that are just now getting the memo. You may have to help get the message out!

The Seriousness of the Need to Upgrade from XP
The death date of Windows XP is a big deal. XP is a decade-old system that isn’t built to handle the onslaught of modern security threats. For example, a system running Windows XP is 21 times more likely to be infected with malware than a PC running Windows 8. Twenty-one times! If this statistic doesn’t make you want to wrap your Windows XP computer with yellow caution tape and download Windows 8, then you must be a risk taker that enjoys living on the virtual edge.

The good news is that the vast majority of businesses are on track with making the transition away from Windows XP. According to Gartner, 90 percent of large enterprises have already switched over or are in the process of migrating to Windows 7 or 8. This means the bulk of the millions of users using Windows XP are consumers and small businesses.

A business currently running Windows XP is already at a higher risk than normal for getting infected with a virus and having sensitive data compromised, and this risk will exponentially increase in April 2014. With this being the case, your own business should be upgraded from XP or in the process of upgrading at this very moment. If you would like assistance with upgrading to a more secure OS, then give PACE Technical Services a call at 905.763.7896.

The XP Security Risk Affects Everyone
It’s important to point out that this issue affects more than just your business. With every transaction you make you are entrusting your sensitive financial information to a company that you assume has strong enough network security to keep your data safe. Because 90% of large enterprises have made the upgrade from XP, you can feel confident that your credit card information that you’ve given to a major corporation will be safe, but what about small businesses?

What if you go holiday shopping at a small downtown mom and pop store and you see the kindly old shopkeeper entering your credit card information into a computer running Windows XP? Or what if you’re at the doctor’s office and you catch the physician entering your sensitive health information into a laptop displaying the Windows XP screen saver? If you find yourself in one of these scenarios, then it’s okay to politely say something about the need to upgrade.

If You See Something, Say Something
It’s not rude to say something about upgrading, after all, your sensitive information is on the line. You may not even be dealing with the person responsible for overseeing the businesses’ IT, but if you stress how important of an issue it is, then perhaps they will pass on the message to someone that can provide a fix (like PACE Technical Services!). It’s the nature of small business owners to be focused on so many important details about running their company that something like upgrading to a more secure OS may never cross their minds. Especially if their computer system seems to be working just fine; this is the mentality of “if it’s not broke don’t fix it.”

Need to Upgrade? We can Help!
It’s situations exactly like this why PACE Technical Services provides small (and large) businesses managed IT services. Using remote monitoring and maintenance tools, we are able to keep software upgraded, scan for viruses, and remotely perform several other maintenance tasks so that business owners don’t have to divert their time from running their business and mess with IT.

If you would like to know more about PACE Technical Services’s managed IT services, or if you would like help updating your company’s computers to something a little more secure than Windows XP, then give us a call at 905.763.7896.


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