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
hackernews.png
reddit.png

 

Latest posts:

New paper: LokiBot: dissecting the C&C panel deployments

First advertised as an information stealer and keylogger when it appeared in underground forums in 2015, LokiBot has added various capabilities over the years and has affected many users worldwide. In a new paper researcher Aditya Sood analyses the…

VB2019 presentation: Building secure sharing systems that treat humans as features not bugs

In a presentation at VB2019 in London, Virtru's Andrea Limbago described how, by exploring data sharing challenges through a socio-technical lens, it is possible to make significant gains toward the secure sharing systems and processes that are vital…

VB2019 presentation: Attor: spy platform with curious GSM fingerprinting

Attor is a newly discovered cyber-espionage platform, use of which dates back to at least 2014 and which focuses on diplomatic missions and governmental institutions. Details of Attor were presented at VB2019 in London by ESET researcher Zuzana…

Why we encourage newcomers and seasoned presenters alike to submit a paper for VB2020

With the call for papers for VB2020 currently open, we explain why, whether you've never presented before or you're a conference circuit veteran, if you have some interesting research to share with the community we want to hear from you!

VB2019 paper: The cake is a lie! Uncovering the secret world of malware-like cheats in video games

At VB2019 in London, Kaspersky researcher Santiago Pontiroli presented a paper on the growing illegal economy around video game cheats and its parallels with the malware industry. Today we publish both Santiago's paper and the recording of his…

We have placed cookies on your device in order to improve the functionality of this site, as outlined in our cookies policy. However, you may delete and block all cookies from this site and your use of the site will be unaffected. By continuing to browse this site, you are agreeing to Virus Bulletin's use of data as outlined in our privacy policy.