One constant about technology is its rapid rate of change. Tools that were once staples, like Internet Explorer and Adobe Flash, get old and are retired. New tools replace obsolete ones. Discontinued technology can leave computers and networks vulnerable to attacks of all kinds.
You shouldn’t use older, discontinued technology just because it works on your system or because your users don’t want to adapt to change. Using outdated tech can lead to data breaches, one of the biggest risks to organizations of all sizes.
Let’s take a look at some of the problems that arise from the use of old, discontinued technology, and a few examples, in particular.
Discontinued Technology Increases Your Risk of Data Breaches
When technology is current, and still maintained by creators, regular patches and updates keep it up-to-date against the latest cyber threats and vulnerabilities.
But, security updates, patches, and code fixes are no longer available for outdated software and hardware. When devices lack security patches, they become a sitting duck for cyber-attacks.
In fact, approximately 1 in 3 data breaches are caused by unpatched system vulnerabilities found through automated exploit programs.
It’s easily one of the most important reasons to ditch your old tech for new.
Further Problems Caused by Old Tech
Another problem with using discontinued technology is that it can leave you behind. If your business looks like you’re in the stone ages to your customers, they can easily lose faith and trust.
Important reasons to keep your technology patched and updated to a supported version are:
- Reduces the risk of a data breach or malware infection
- Meets data privacy compliance requirements for certain industries
- Keeps a good reputation and fosters customer trust
- To be competitive in your market
- Mitigates hardware and software compatibility issues
- Enables employee productivity
Older systems are clunky and get in the way of employee productivity. If you keep these older systems in use, it often leads to the loss of good team members due to frustration.
And, that might become a bigger issue than you might think.
In fact, 49% of surveyed workers say they would consider leaving their jobs due to poor technology.
Now, let’s look at some specific outdated technology tools you should replace as soon as possible.
If you’re still using any of these for your business, make sure to act now, before it’s too late!
Many moons ago, Internet Explorer (IE) was the number one browser in the world. But, over time, Google Chrome and other browsers “Edged” it out. That even includes IE’s replacement, Microsoft Edge.
Microsoft began phasing out IE with the introduction of Microsoft Edge in 2015. In recent years, fewer applications have been supporting use in IE. The browser lost all support beginning on June 15, 2022.
This is probably the best example of discontinued technology most users will be familiar with.
Millions of websites used Adobe Flash in the early 2000s. But, newer tools now do the animations and other neat things Flash once performed. This made the tool obsolete, and Adobe ended it.
The Adobe Flash Player lost all support, including security updates, as of January 1, 2021.
Do you still have this lingering on any of your computers? If so, you should uninstall the browser plugin and any Flash software remaining.
Flash’s shutdown created a huge impact on IT Administrators who used the vSphere Web Client to manage their vCenter 6.0 implementations.
Luckily for them, shipped natively with the release of 6.5, admins can now enjoy their web-based management with the use of the HTML5 web client.
Windows 7 or Earlier
Although Windows 7 was a very popular operating system, it’s now gone the way of the dinosaur.
The Windows 7 OS lost support on January 14, 2020. Its replacements, Windows 10 and Windows 11, now widely operate in it’s place.
While it may still technically run, it’s very vulnerable to hacks. Additionally, Microsoft Windows OS also remains a high-value target for hackers.
So, you can be sure they are out there looking for systems still running this obsolete version of Windows.
If you’re using this discontinued technology, you need to make the necessary upgrades ASAP.
macOS 10.14 Mojave and Earlier
Because of the cost of iMacs and MacBooks, people tend to hang onto them as long as possible. And, that’s certainly understandable, to a point.
However, once these devices reach a certain point, updates no longer work. This leaves the hardware stuck on an older and unsupported macOS version.
If you are running macOS 10.14 Mojave or earlier, then your OS is no longer supported by Apple, and you need to upgrade.
Oracle 18c Database
If your business uses Oracle databases, then you may want to check your current version.
That’s because if your company runs the Oracle 18C Database, then you’re vulnerable. Breaches can easily happen due to unpatched system vulnerabilities.
The Oracle 18C Database lost all support in June of 2021.
If you’ve already upgraded, then you’ll want to keep an eye out for another upcoming end-of-support date. Both Oracle 19C and 21C will lose premiere support in April of 2024.
Microsoft SQL Server 2014
Another popular database tool is Microsoft’s SQL Server.
If you use SQL Server 2014, then we have some bad news. You guess it – mainstream support has already ended. And in July of 2024, all support, including security updates, will stop.
This gives you a little more time to upgrade before you’re in danger of not getting security patches.
But it’s better to upgrade sooner rather than later. This leaves plenty of time for testing and verification of the upgrade.
Get Help Upgrading Your Discontinued Technology & Reducing Risk
It’s not always pleasant when you need to swap out discontinued technology for newer, current products.
Upgrades can be scary, especially if everything has been running great. You may be afraid that a migration or upgrade will cause compatibility issues.
But, the good news is that you never need to go it alone.
Simply contact us at 412-349-6680, or fill out the form below, and our security and IT experts will gladly outline your options and best solutions.