This press note,as released by the company,has been reproduced in full
HONG KONG, April 29, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Microsoft( http://www.microsoft.com/en-hk/default.aspx ) reminded customers today that it will officially retire service and support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014. With this deadline only around one year away, it is essential for SMBs and consumers in Hong Kong to migrate from XP, an eleven-year-old operating system, to avoid external vulnerabilities and risks that have the potential to cause business disruption and extra costs.
From April 8, 2014, Microsoft will no longer provide automatic fixes, updates, or online technical assistance for Windows XP. This also means that users will no longer receive security updates that help protect PCs from harmful viruses, spyware, and other malicious software that can steal personal information. To help steer customers away from security risks and boost productivity, “Get to Modern” upgrade offer launched by Microsoft makes your software stay up-to-date and more efficient.
Raymond Hung, Windows Client Business Group Lead, Microsoft Hong Kong: “While XP was one of the most popular operating systems in Microsoft’s history, it was not designed to handle the challenges of today, such as the increased exposure to cyber-attacks and demands for more data privacy, unlike our newer operating systems such as Windows 7 and 8. By far, the security risk is the most concerning for customers as there are more sophisticated forms of attack which can impact safety of personal information and the hidden costs associated with support and business continuity.”
In March 2013, according to StatCounter (Note 1), Windows XP makes up 23.67% of PCs in Hong Kong with a steady rate of decline since Windows 7 was launched in October 2009. That equates to over 2.2 million PCs (Note 2). StatCounter data also shows that about 49% of PCs in Hong Kong are already on Windows 7 and in the last two months, there’s been an uptake of Windows 8 as well.
Industry analysts are all in agreement that now is the time to upgrade from the decade-old software:
IDC: “Windows XP has been a major platform that both consumers and business alike have depended on for many, many years now,” says Bryan Ma, Associate Vice President of Client Devices Research at IDC Asia/Pacific. “And yet with the termination of extended support for XP looming ahead, it is important that preparations be made to migrate to newer versions of the OS in order to make sure that users can continue to rely on their systems.”
Frost & Sullivan: Alan Tong, Director, Asia Pacific, Frost & Sullivan, commented, “The increasing new technology in mobile computing and the sophistication of network security attacks will test the performance of XP when the support ceases. Enterprises need to consider the functional costs and the vulnerability of their PCs if they continue with the existing OS.”
Hung continued, “Whether you’re an SMB or consumer in Hong Kong, the dangers of continued use of XP are real and the risks should not be under-estimated. Windows XP is three generations behind Microsoft’s most modern operating system so continuing to use PCs with XP is similar to driving a car without a seat belt or a motorbike without a helmet. The risks are real and the only way to protect yourself and the organization is to upgrade.”
According to the findings of Microsoft’s Security Intelligence Report, Volume 14 (Note 3), released in April 2013, data indicates that the infection rate of Windows 7 and Windows 8 machines are lower than that of Windows XP by an average of 3 times and 20 times respectively.
Over the last decade, security threats have escalated in a number of ways:
— Miscellaneous Potentially Unwanted Software: 42.3% of
systems infected with malware in the fourth quarter of
2012, up from 34.2% in the third quarter of 2012
— Miscellaneous Trojans: 29.5% of systems infected with
malware in the fourth quarter of 2012, up from 26.9%
in the third quarter of 2012
— Worms: 14.4% of systems infected with malware in the
fourth quarter of 2012, down from 14.5% in the third
quarter of 2012
“Security and scalability are vital to our business,” said Rainer Sip, Operations Director of Baby Kingdom. “Our customer database continues to grow rapidly, with around 80,000 registered members in 2004 to more than 450,000 members today; we need a sophisticated system that can provide supreme protection for our member database without compromising our business efficiency. For us, moving to Windows 7 was a no-brainer; it has lots of modern security built in and so gives us comfort we are not left unprotected. Productivity-wise, it allows our staff to benefit from all the new features of Windows including secure mobile access from laptops and tablets. As the founder of the most popular parental portal in Hong Kong, I have great peace of mind with this decision.”
Stay Updated: Microsoft “Get to Modern” Upgrade Offer
To help business customers mitigate any potential risks and boost productivity, Microsoft has launched a “Get to Modern” upgrade offer. Eligible customers can get a 15% discount when purchasing Office Standard Open License along with Windows Pro Upgrade, so that they could enjoy the ultimate productivity experience with the latest version of Windows and the New Office. The offer will expire on June 21, 2013. For details, please visit www.microsoft.com/hk/customer/promotion/english.
The New Office Adds to Boost Productivity
The New Office helps customers to get connected anywhere with expanded connectivity through the Cloud-based architecture, enabling employees to work together across multiple devices, and stay safe with enhanced enterprise-class security. Office 365 is on track to be one of the fastest growing businesses in Microsoft history, as Microsoft recorded a 150% increase in small and medium-sized businesses using Office 365 in the past 12 months. With over 1 billion users, every 1 in 7 people on the planet is using Microsoft Office.
— Source: http://gs.statcounter.com/#os-HK-monthly-201201-201303
— Source: Based on total PC count in IDC WW PC Tracker
Installed Base 4Q 2012
— Source: http://www.microsoft.com/security/sir
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
Image Credit: Microsoft