With Microsoft's decision to "end support for its 12-year-old OS in April," PC Pro's Shona Ghosh warns that Windows XP will be getting quite the attention from hackers "as they target hundreds of millions of users on unpatched systems."
"The very first month that Microsoft releases security updates for supported versions of Windows, attackers will reverse-engineer those updates, find the vulnerabilities and test Windows XP to see if it shares [them]," wrote Tim Rains, the director of Microsofts Trustworthy Computing group.
"If it does, attackers will attempt to develop exploit code that can take advantage of those vulnerabilities on Windows XP," Rains added. "Since a security update will never become available for Windows XP to address these vulnerabilities, Windows XP will essentially have a zero-day vulnerability forever."
Microsoft noted that XP shared 30 security holes with Windows 7 and Windows 8 between July 2012 and July 2013, giving hackers ample opportunity to reverse-engineer vulnerabilities.
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