Microsoft has released security updates for its out-of-support but still widely popular Windows XP operating system, in a bid to prevent another cyber attack similar to WannaCry ransomware, which crippled the cyber world last month.
For the second time in row, Microsoft has taken an unprecedented step to release security updates for Windows XP, which went out of support in 2014. The new updates are available for all Windows versions, including Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10.
“In reviewing the updates for this month, some vulnerabilities were identified that pose elevated risk of cyber attacks by government organizations, sometimes referred to as nation-state actors or other copycat organizations,” Adrienne Hall, General Manager, Cyber Defense Operations Center at Microsoft, explains.
“To address this risk, today we are providing additional security updates along with our regular Update Tuesday service. These security updates are being made available to all customers, including those using older versions of Windows.”
Last month, Microsoft was forced to push out emergency security updates for Windows XP to naturalise the spread of the WannaCry ransomware attacks, which infected 300,000 PCs in 150 countries worldwide. The ransomware attack had forced British hospitals to turn away patents and affected major companies and government organizations.
“As part of our regular Update Tuesday schedule, we have taken action to provide additional critical security updates to address vulnerabilities that are at heightened risk of exploitation due to past nation-state activity and disclosures, said Eric Doerr, General Manager, Microsoft Security Response Center at Microsoft. “We are committed to ensuring our customers are protected against these potential attacks and we recommend those on older platforms, such as Windows XP, prioritize downloading and applying these critical updates.