It’s no secret that Microsoft’s Internet Explorer has been clinging on to dear life for quite a while. However, last year Microsoft announced that as of Tuesday, January 12, 2016 only the most current version of Internet Explorer will be supported. This means that Internet Explorer 8, 9 and 10 will no longer be supported.
This Internet Explorer end of life announcement doesn’t come as a huge shocker, as Microsoft announced that the browser had been moved to legacy status in March of 2015. Legacy status basically means that it is being kept around for enterprise compatibility sake.
However, anyone that is planning to use new versions of Internet Explorer for the foreseeable future should consider other options, as Microsoft continues to transition customers to Edge on Windows 10.
What does this mean?
Well, by “latest version” Microsoft means that Internet Explorer 11 will be officially supported. IE11 has multiple improvements over it’s predecessors, including increased security, better backwards compatibility, and support for modern web standards.
For anyone running a system on Windows 8.1 or Windows 10, there is nothing to worry about. Both of these operating systems came with IE11 preinstalled. However, if you are still using Windows 8, this is a good opportunity to update to 8.1, as Windows no longer supports PCs that are not upgraded to Windows 8.1. Users on Windows 7 who have update notifications enabled will be prompted during Microsoft’s regular “Patch Tuesday” on January 12. See the chart below:
However, if you are running on Windows Vista, you may need to start looking at your options. Windows Vista users will stick with Internet Explorer 9, as mainstream support for Vista ended more than a year before IE11 was rolled out. This means that if you continue to use Internet Explorer, you will be running an unsupported, and updated version.
Why does this matter?
Running an older version of a web browser is never a good idea. Consider this, if a new vulnerability for your browser is announced, it will be a zero day hole. Why? Because this vulnerability will not have yet been patched. What’s worse than that? It will stay a zero day hole forever, because it never will be patched.
Outdated web browsers are a huge security risk, as they are easy targets for malicious hackers. Once more, if your business is in an industry that is subject to any sort of regulatory compliance requirements, running outdated browsers would be an infringement of those requirements. This could have immensely huge financial implications if this were to become an issue during a compliance audit. Not to mention that if a breach of some sort were to occur, and it was revealed that someone in your organization was running any sort of unsupported or unpatched software, the fines and lawsuits would go through the roof.
Internet Explorer End of Life v. 8, 9, and 10: How Can Orion Help?
Orion’s team of dedicated Microsoft Specialists can help your organization update your current systems to run a supported version of IE, or we can help you transition your systems to Microsoft Edge. Orion is a Microsoft Certified Partner with countless Microsoft Certified Professionals on our staff of experts. Our team can help you decide what upgrade course is best for your needs, and make sure that all system updates are correctly and smoothly deployed.