Avecto surveyed 500 IT and cybersecurity professionals to gauge their attitudes about preparedness, and the benefits and risks associated with Windows 10 alignment. The survey was distributed to 150 professionals in the United States, 125 in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), another 125 in Ireland and 100 professionals in Norway through Google Consumer Surveys.
Some survey respondents said they already have migrated to Windows 10 and are using the migration as a catalyst to improve their security posture and roll out more secure endpoints for their users; however, many organizations are lagging behind and don’t understand the potential risks of the migration.
"The migration to Windows 10 has the potential to benefit organizations tremendously, but only if they take the right steps to prepare their security strategy,” said Andrew Avanessian, Avecto's chief operations officer. “The survey results demonstrate how there is still much work to be done as organizations prepare for Windows 7 end of life.”
Some one-third (31 percent) of the respondents globally believe that Windows 7 end of life already occurred. Only 30 percent knew the actual date. Microsoft extended support for Windows 7 to January 2023, but only for users that are willing to pay an escalating fee. Companies that don’t make the shift by January 2020 could find themselves "paying a large sum of money in the years to come for support," according to Avecto.
More than half of respondents believe their organization is ready for the Windows 10 migration, but the other 44 percent are unsure about preparation plans or don't feel prepared, according to the survey.
More than half of respondents across all regions believe the Windows 10 migration is a way to improve overall company cybersecurity. For Windows 10 users, it’s important to identify partners that can prevent threats being introduced by malicious content and vulnerable applications, leading to data being stolen or encrypted, Avecto said.
The top concern for securing remote workers and off-the-network employees was vulnerable endpoints (40 percent). Securing those endpoints, for all regions except the UAE, turns out to be the biggest challenge for securing remote workers and employees that use bring your own device (BYOD) on Windows 10 was ensuring that endpoints were secure. UAE respondents were most concerned with malware attacks.
Across all regions, the survey data revealed that cybersecurity is top of mind for organizations getting ready to make the transfer to Windows 10.