Should software vendors extend support for their products on Windows XP?

Posted by   Virus Bulletin on   Oct 21, 2013

Is Google making the Internet more or less secure by extending support for Chrome on XP?

A software vendor's decision to release updates to its product is generally seen as a good thing, but the decision by Google to continue to support the Chrome browser for Windows XP beyond the operating system's end-of-life has been somewhat controversial.

Security experts are anxiously looking ahead to April 2014 when Microsoft will stop releasing updates for its popular Windows XP operating system. More than 12 years after its release, the operating system is still widely used, thus the impact of a "perpetual zero-day", as is has been called, could be significant.

Of course, it is still possible that many XP users will be convinced to move to a newer operating system - and it is also possible that many XP users don't download updates in the first place. To them, the lack of availability of updates won't make them more vulnerable than they already are - though that is hardly a reassuring thought.

In the meantime, Google has announced that it will continue to support the XP version of its Chrome browser for at least a year beyond the end-of-life of the operating system.

One could argue that this is a good thing: after all, it will remove one infection vector for XP machines. It may also be the best Google can do in a situation in which - for various good or bad reasons - people won't stop using XP.

But one could also argue that this will only encourage people to continue to use XP. It has even been suggested that this is a rather unfair way of Google taking on its big rival Microsoft, perhaps even as a sneaky way to push its own operating system.

What do you think? Is Google making the Internet more secure by extending support for its own product? Or is it giving stubborn users of XP what may seem like a good reason to continue using the operating system?

Let us know what you think by voting in the poll in the right-hand sidebar of the VB website.

Posted on 21 October 2013 by Martijn Grooten

twitter.png
fb.png
linkedin.png
googleplus.png
reddit.png

 

Latest posts:

Throwback Thursday: Giving the EICAR test file some teeth

The 68-byte EICAR test file plays as important a role today as it did 19 years ago. In this week's Throwback Thursday we look back at a VB99 conference paper in which Randy Abrams described how the use of this 'miracle tool' could help enhance your…

XMRig used in new macOS cryptominer

A new piece of cryptocurrency-mining malware on macOS has been found to use the popular XMRig miner.

Tendency for DDoS attacks to become less volumetric fits in a wider trend

CDN provider Cloudflare reports an increase in DDoS attacks targeting layer 7 and focusing on exhausting server resources rather than sending large volumes of data. This fits in a wider trend.

Turkish Twitter users targeted with mobile FinFisher spyware

Through fake social media accounts, users were tricked into installing an Android application that was actually a mobile version of the FinFisher spyware.

Hide'n'Seek IoT botnet adds persistence

The Hide'n'Seek IoT botnet has received an update to make its infection persist on infected devices beyond a restart.