We all know what the term “use by date” means. It refers to the date after which a product is no longer safe to consume and is regularly used in reference to food and medications. Everything has an end of life.
Technology is constantly changing, so new systems are devised to keep up with the times. The world changes so fast that the newest trend can seem old in a matter of months.
Many people don’t consider how their company’s security and privacy are affected by outdated technology. Obsolete technology is often more vulnerable to hackers than newer versions because it doesn’t receive security updates from the manufacturer. In addition, this can leave your device and its data more vulnerable to attacks. Furthermore, outdated technology may not be compliant with current privacy regulations and therefore could expose your company to legal action.
So, what does this mean for you and your organization? Staying up to date with the latest software programs and hardware is crucial. To protect your business from the downfall of outdated technology, you need a plan for when your systems reach their expiration date.
How to Find the End of Life for your Hardware and Software
Finding the end of life for software is relatively easy once you know the version of software you are running. If you are running larger commercial application, generally the manufacturer lists the current version and all supported versions on their website. If the versions are not listed, a quick call to their support line can answer the question.
For hardware (servers, firewalls, and computers), the end of life is easier to calculate. It’s five years from date of installation.
Why five years? Five years is generally the age where the electronics of the device can start to fail without notice, leading to emergency repairs and the possibility of parts availability issues. Ideally, production hardware is phased out before the five-year date in order to prevent hardware failures and reduce the number of emergency repairs. If you’re still running equipment that’s older than five years, it’s time to upgrade.
A stitch in time saves nine
If you follow the news, you’re probably aware of the upsurge in data breaches and cyberattacks. These attacks have targeted businesses of all sizes and industries. As a result, there is a greater acknowledgment of the importance of cybersecurity globally.
However, many organizations are still not taking adequate precautions to defend themselves. One of the biggest mistakes a business can make is presuming that its cybersecurity measures are sufficient. Investing in supported technologies is one of the most advantageous ways to protect your business. Supported technologies have routine internal security measures in place, and their developers create and release updates and patches to make the product more secure and helpful.
In the event of a data breach or cyberattack, supported technologies will also have a team of experts who can assist you in recovering from the incident.
Always remember that prevention is better than cure.
Struggling with outdated and unsupported technology? As always, we’re here to help.