Whenever a certain friend calls me over to help them with an IT problem I always laugh silently to myself that they are still using Windows 7.

That friend is not alone however with Kaspersky publishing data regarding which operating systems its customers (including regular folks, very small businesses, enterprise and SMEs) use.

The good news is that the vast majority of users are using the latest operating system from Microsoft – Windows 10. The segments reveal that 53 percent of consumers, 55 percent of very small businesses and 47 of percent of SMEs and enterprise are using Windows 10.

One would think that Windows 8 would be next in-line according to the largest amount of users but you would be wrong.

Dragging on the coat-tails of Windows 10 is Windows 7 and here there is cause for concern. Kaspersky’s data found that 47 percent of enterprise and SMEs are still using Windows 7. Why is this concerning? Mainly because Microsoft will cut support for the operating system in January 2020.

Kaspersky enterprise solutions manager, Alexey Pankratov, explains that while businesses might be comfortable on good ol’ Win7, they should consider moving soon.

“The widespread use of Windows 7 is concerning as there is less than six months to go until this version becomes unsupported. The reasons behind the lag in updating OS vary depending on the software in place, which may be unable to run on the newest OS versions, to economic reasons and even down to comfortability of routinely using the same OS. Nonetheless, an old unpatched OS is a cybersecurity risk and the cost of an incident may be substantially higher than the cost of upgrading. This is why we recommend that customers migrate to supported versions and ensure that additional security tools are in place during the transition period,” said Pankratov.

As for consumers and very small businesses, Windows 7 is still popular among 38 percent of users.

Windows 8.1 has a few folks sticking around with 5 percent of SMEs and enterprise still running the operating system, 5 percent of very small businesses and 7 percent of consumers.

Curiously, there is a noteworthy number of Windows XP users (2 percent among consumers and 1 percent for very small businesses) which stopped receiving support in 2014.

We highly recommend upgrading from Windows 7 before January 2020. While you might not be the NHS in the UK, cybercriminals can exploit security flaws in older operating systems and sow havoc.

Upgrade your OS and be safe rather than sorry.

[Source – Kaspersky][Image – CC BY SA mendhak]