(Washington, DC) – Computer security experts are warning the country that some of its most popular computers are using outdated operating systems, potentially costing average, ordinary, everyday Americans billions of dollars in losses. And they say you can bank on it.
The ATM machines used at neighborhood banks have not yet switched to a current Microsoft operating system – Windows 7 or Windows 8 – and are instead using operating systems that are generations behind. In an estimated 95% of all ATMs, the Windows XP operating system is used. Some believe the average is even higher than that.
Even though Microsoft will be supporting Windows XP through July 2015, it is so old that its security patches and antivirus applications are limited in their effectiveness. “That’s why we’re asking Congress for additional money,” said a Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity. “We want to fix this problem long before the July 2015 deadline. That’s why we’ve hired CGI Federal to do the job.”
CGI Federal is the company, recently fired by the White House, which oversaw the disasterous creation and deployment of the Healthcare.gov Web site.
When asked why the “too big to fail” banks, who were bailed out by taxpayers just a few years ago, couldn’t foot the bill for the ATM upgrades, the spokesman replied that it was “out of the question” for bank CEOs and CFOs to contribute. “They’ve been through so much stress over the past few years, it just wouldn’t be fair to take money away from their recently-replenished coffers,” said the FDIC spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity.
And it doesn’t look like Congress has much of an appetite to lend a helping hand, either to banks or to the FDIC. Even though Congress likes to take care of its big-business benefactors, it seems unlikely that a group of 535 people that threw over one million people off unemployment this year will look to provide extra money for any initiatives.
“We don’t see why this is such a big deal,” said a Congressional spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Congress, always at the forefront of technology, is very happy running computers using the Windows 3.1. Since the Internet is just a series of tubes, we’re doing OK with this slightly antiquated system.”