As of January 10th Microsoft will stop support for Windows 8.1. From this date, technical assistance from Microsoft and software updates will no longer be provided. Support for the Edge browser on Windows 8.1 is also being cut. This means that the web browser will no longer receive feature or security updates.
Any PC that is running Windows 8.1 after this date are likely to have an increase in exposure to security risks.
Other software vendors are also dropping support for Windows 8.1. A notable example of this is Google, who are cutting off support for the Google Chrome Browser on Windows 8.1 as well as Windows 7 and 8.
Windows 8.1 was released in 2013 by Microsoft as the latest operating system to their lineup. This operating system had a focus on being touch-screen friendly.
Windows 8.1 also reintroduced more traditional Windows interface options, like the taskbar, that were removed in Windows 8, making it much more popular with users.
Most businesses, will not feel the effect of this directly. This is because Windows 8.1 is not widely installed and used across the globe. In December 2022 the market share of desktop operating systems installed had Windows 8.1 at only 2.59%.
However, if your business or home still uses a Windows 8.1 machine, your device will no longer be receiving critical security patches as of the 10th January. This means that attackers will have more time to find attacks against these machines, as the vulnerabilities are not able to be patched. This makes these machines appealing to Cyber Attackers.
Cyber Wise recommend any machine running Windows 8.1 is upgraded to a currently supported version of Windows if the device has the right specifications or is replaced with a newer device.
If you would like to discuss this further, please get in touch.