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Windows 'XPires': 400 million active users worldwide left vulnerable to hacking

Small businesses, ATMs and individuals using the Windows XP operating system will be vulnerable to electronic attack, starting tomorrow.

"Never before has a Microsoft platform this successful been put out of service: XP still has at least 400 million active users," according to the story by Paul Thurrott at windowsITpro.

The end of support for the XP will also leave "... up to 95% of bank ATM machines vulnerable to hackers," according to an artcile at BusinessInsider, which further states:

"Machines running outdated operating systems, unbacked by corporate security updates, are the easiest types of computers to hack. And most ATMs run Windows XP."

The governments of two nations, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, will be paying millions of dollars to Microsoft for special extension of support to their computers still using Windows XP. Expatica states that there are "... between 34,000 and 40,000 Dutch national government civil servants ... still using computers equipped with Windows XP ...."

A previous story in Examiner highlighted over 48,000 "significant breaches" of governement computers just in 2012 here in the United States by agencies that failed to update basic software like Microsoft. Since 2010 the Department of Homeland Security is held responsible for the "cybersecurity of all federal government networks."

Failure to update software actually creates entry points for hackers the report states.