Windows users put on alert about Microsoft Office end-of-life date: Upgrade to keep safe

Windows users being given notice about when they’ll need to upgrade Office by. Microsoft has given anyone running Office 2013 – which is available on Windows 10, Windows 8 and Windows 7 – a year’s notice to prepare for the software’s end-of-life. Office 2013 will reach its end-of-life on April 11 2023, with anyone using it advised to upgrade before then to keep their device safe.

The Redmond-based tech giant issued a warning to users this week about the Office 2013 end-of-life date, saying those that don’t upgrade before this time next year will be opening their device up to potential security risks.

This is because after a software reaches its end-of-life no further security updates are released for the programme. Hackers can take advantage of this by finding vulnerabilities with the software to hack PCs around the world, knowing patches needed to fix the issue aren’t scheduled to be released.

It’s what happened with the WannaCry ransomware attack of 2017, which ended up causing the NHS millions of pounds worth of damage after PCs running Windows XP – which no longer received security updates – were targeted.

Speaking about the Office 2013 end-of-life date, Microsoft said: “After five years of Mainstream Support, and five years of Extended Support, Office 2013 will reach the End of Extended Support on April 11, 2023. Per the Fixed Lifecycle Policy, after this date security updates for Office 2013 will no longer be available.

“After Office 2013 reaches the end of support, Microsoft won’t provide any new security updates, and the continued use of Office 2013 after April 2023 may increase your organisation’s exposure to security risks or impact your ability to meet compliance obligations.”

For most people running Office 2013 it’s advised that they upgrade to Microsoft 365 Apps.

This is a subscription based version of the Office software suite.

Microsoft says: “Please start upgrading to Microsoft 365 Apps, which is designed to receive regular updates, and will help you stay current by getting security updates and our latest features.

“Alternatively, if your organization requires a static, unchanging product, consider moving to Office LTSC 2021.”

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