EY predicts growth in businesses embracing Bring Your Own Devices as Microsoft ends support for XP

6 March 2014

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Microsoft is due to end its support for the XP operating system, which currently accounts for approximately 20-30% of the world’s operating systems, on 8 April. Those companies who have failed to upgrade to newer operating systems could be left exposed to cyber attacks and there is growing evidence to suggest that hackers are looking to expose businesses that are left using legacy operating systems. For those that have failed to take the necessary steps to upgrade, we may see these businesses embracing Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD), where employees bring their own personal devices for work purposes, as a quick solution to the problem.

Mark Brown, Director of Information Security at EY, comments: "Hackers will use this as an opportunity to take advantage of those organisations that have not got their "house in order". Far too many businesses are asleep at the wheel over this issue and this could mean valuable consumer data could be at risk.

He adds: "Given the scale and significance of the threat, we want to see UK government doing more to tackle this problem and raise awareness amongst business leaders of the risk imperative of cyber security. With only a month to go we now really need to see urgent action being placed onto establishing the business case to upgrade to newer operating systems such as Windows 7 or 8."

Brown continues: “BYOD potentially offers a fast track to upgrading outdated systems as employees, who tend to be using newer operating systems at home, can thus increase the levels of protection provided to a business’ IT system. However, this will bring new challenges and risk as it moves away from safer traditional enterprise IT platforms.”