Is your computer system at risk of infection?

TrojanThe answer is not straight forward, it comes down to which operating system you are using, e.g. is it Windows XP, Vista, or perhaps the newest Windows 8 that is installed on your trusted machine, and how well protected that system is?

I am talking about Microsoft’s operating systems here, not Apple’s OS, and the age of the systems counts when it comes to how vulnerable they are to being hacked.

Here at SeniorNet we still

come across quite a few of our members on the now 12 year old Windows XP operating system, and as I have repeatedly said the XP SP3 is no longer supported by Microsoft after April 2014, not long now.

Microsoft Windows XP wordmark official.

What it means for those of you still on the old OS is, that your chance of being infected with malware is that much higher, indeed if you compare with say Windows 8 OS then your chance of infection is 6 times higher. If you are on Vista the XP infection rate is 1.5 times higher and three times higher than for Windows 7, with other words the newer your operating system software is the more protection ir offers.

What is evident is that Windows 8 is a great deal safer to use than its predecessors though it may be because the statistic are skewed a bit since there are fewer W8 users as yet, so fewer reported incidences of hacking.

cybercrimeCyber criminals are a real nuisance and apart from the obvious attempt to defraud you out of money and making a mess of your computer if they get into the inner workings, they nevertheless are well aware that once XP is no longer supported they can start reverse-engineering the various security patches issued for e.g. W7 or W8 to find the loop holes in XP.

That makes your XP system vulnerable and given that almost 30% of PCs globally have yet to change from XP that is an awful lot of computers the baddies are salivating to get into.

Cyber-attacks febr 2013You probably like your old XP, we have all used it sometime ago, but running an unsupported system is not the best way to go about your computing. Think carefully about upgrading to the newer safer systems, and yes all systems come across malware but XP is the most likely to become infected.

When you upgrade to the W7 or W8, or the very latest Windows 8.1 Kapiti SeniorNet is here to help you get the most from your computer, lots of friendly help, lots of courses and workshops and sessions to ease you into good housekeeping.

See you soon.

Happy computing.