Microsoft has urgently advised millions of PC enthusiasts to switch to Windows 10 in order to be safe.
Millions of individuals who have not yet upgraded to Windows 10 have received alerts from Microsoft.The end-of-support warning for Windows 8.1 users started appearing this week, according to the Redmond-based computer giant.Microsoft will stop providing support for this enormously popular operating system in January 2023. It was first published in 2013.
This implies that Windows 8.1 users will no longer have access to essential security updates, which are needed to patch harmful flaws that hackers can exploit.They must update to the more modern Windows 10 software in order to continue receiving these crucial patches.
After the recent KB5015874 cumulative update was released, this new warning was added to Windows 8.1, according to Bleeping Computer.
Windows 8.1 users are greeted with the following text: “Microsoft will stop providing security updates and technical support for Windows 8.1-powered PCs on January 10, 2023.We are contacting you right away to express our appreciation for your loyalty and to assist you in getting ready for the future”.
There are still many users using Windows version 8.1 on their PCs, as seen by the operating system’s 1.63 percent market share, according to statistics from NetMarketShare.Windows 7 (16.45 percent), Mac OS X 10.15 (5.01 percent), and Windows 10 are in front of it (72.06 percent).
Statistics for the Windows 11 user base are not displayed by NetMarketShare.
These NetMarketShare statistics, however, highlight the security concerns that many Windows users are exposed to.Despite the operating system’s end of support in 2020, a sizable number of individuals still use Windows 7.
It follows that Windows 7 customers have not been receiving the required security upgrades for years, putting them at risk of flaws and vulnerabilities.
The same predicament will apply to anyone who continues to use Windows 8.1 once it has reached the end of support.
And not so long ago, the risk of doing this was made clear.
Some of the more well-known hacking incidents in recent years are the WannaCry ransomware assaults.
Data of the victims was encrypted throughout this global cyberattack, which exclusively targeted Windows devices.
Bad actors held the data hostage and sought Bitcoin payments as ransom.
And this attack notably hurt the NHS; it is estimated that the disruption cost the system £92 million.Given that some computers were still running the outdated Windows XP operating system, WannaCry had a significant negative impact on the NHS.
It’s best to upgrade to a newer version of Windows as soon as possible if you’re still using Windows 8.1 or Windows 7 in order to shield your computer from present and potential dangers.