Windows XP not “dead&” yet; Microsoft makes exception with emergency update for IE

Microsoft earlier this month provided an emergency security update for Internet Explorer to prevent hackers from continuing to do their dirty work.
But that wasn’t the big news.
In a surprise move, Microsoft allowed Windows XP machines to receive the update, even though Microsoft had indicated in April it considered the 13-year-old operating system retired.
“Even though Windows XP is no longer supported by Microsoft and is past the time we normally provide security updates, we’ve decided to provide an update for all versions of Windows XP (including embedded),” Adrienne Hall, General Manager, Trustworthy Computing, Microsoft said in a blog post. “We made this exception based on the proximity to the end of support for Windows XP.
“The reality is there have been a very small number of attacks based on this particular vulnerability and concerns were, frankly, overblown. Unfortunately this is a sign of the times and this is not to say we don’t take these reports seriously. We absolutely do.”
That is not to say that Microsoft is not encouraging users to update from Windows XP. They are.
“Just because this update is out now doesn’t mean you should stop thinking about getting off Windows XP and moving to a newer version of Windows and the latest version of Internet Explorer,” Hall continued in the blog post. “If you are on Windows 7, upgrade to Internet Explorer 11. Our modern operating systems provide more safety and security than ever before.”
Microsoft dropped XP from its support list three weeks ago, leaving some to question how serious Microsoft was — and is — on declaring an end of life date for operating systems.
Hall answers by saying security is Microsoft’s No. 1 priority.
“This connected world, which brings so much goodness to consumers and businesses, also has a dark side,” Hall said. “People and organizations who seek to disrupt technology use and steal information. We are standing guard. We’ve compiled an admirable track record over the last decade in the way we build our products with security at the core and the way we update them every single month to be more secure, chock full of privacy protections, more reliable – more trustworthy.”
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