Microsoft: Security Essentials for Windows XP Also a Goner in April
When Microsoft ends its support of the Windows XP operating system, Security Essentials for the aging OS is also set to vanish.Microsoft will stop supporting Windows XP on April 8, 2014, more than 12 years since the desktop operating system first launched in 2001. Users hoping to eke a few more months, perhaps years, out of the OS, were dealt another blow by Microsoft. In addition to putting a stop to security patches as updates for the aging OS, Microsoft has announced that it will also stop providing what amounts to a first line of defense for many XP users. Warning that "technical assistance for Windows XP will no longer be available, including automatic updates," the company said that it "will also stop providing Microsoft Security Essentials for download on Windows XP on this date." Microsoft Security Essentials, the free, slimmed down successor to Windows Live OneCare, guards against Trojans, rootkits and other malware on Windows XP, 7 and Vista (Windows Defender replaces Security Essentials in Windows 8). Due to its tight integration with the OS, lightweight operation and lack of a price tag, it emerged as "good enough" protection for scores of users. In a few short months, that protection is set to vanish.
Security experts at Microsoft have warned that come April, malware coders will unleash a wave of malware targeting Windows XP, endangering the data of users and businesses that are still reliant on the OS. Developed during the midst of a nascent Internet, Windows XP is simply showing its age, according to Tim Rains, director of Microsoft Trustworthy Computing.