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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Software warning for charities

This news post is over 10 years old

Charities using Windows XP will need to upgrade or face security problems

Charities are being warned that support for Windows XP operating system ends on 8 April.

It means that there will be no more official security updates and bug fixes for the operating system from Microsoft.

More than a quarter of infections are Windows XP-based

Statistics suggest 20-25% of all users have stuck with XP despite the fact that there have been three major releases of Windows since its debut in 2001.

It is unknown how many charities in Scotland use the operating system, though it is estimated in the hundreds, as many smaller groups don’t upgrade their software regularly because of the cost.

A survey by Ciscofound that smaller third sector groups only upgrade their operating systems after 10 years.

David Emm, a senior research analyst at security firm Kaspersky, said anyone currently running Windows XP already faced a disproportionate risk of falling victim to malware.

“Our data indicates that less than one fifth of our customers run Windows XP but more than a quarter of infections are Windows XP-based,” he said.

“Effectively, every vulnerability discovered after 8 April will become a zero-day vulnerability – that is, one for which there is not and never will be, a patch.”