The latest operating systems provide better security than ever. But as the WannaCry outbreak demonstrated, many devices still run older, no longer supported operating systems, and many organizations and individuals became malware victims, in part, because of their reliance on those outdated systems.
Whose fault is that? “When you’ve got something which seems to be doing its job, exactly as it needs to do, to have to just upgrade it, because the embedded operating system is old, or the integration into new systems is possibly … outdated, it would seem to be a waste of funds,” says security firm ESET’s Mark James (see No-Brainer Ransomware Defenses).
Britain’s National Health Service, for example, was hit hard by the WannaCry outbreak, and some infections were tied to an ancient operating system, in some cases running in equipment that could not be updated (see NHS Denies Widespread Windows XP Use).