End of Windows XP poses big problems for China

Beijing, Apr 9 (EFE).- Microsoft stopped offering technical updates on Wednesday for Windows XP, creating problems for users around the world and especially in China, where two of every three computers uses the popular operating system.

An estimated 60 percent to 70 percent of the computers in China use Windows XP, well above the 27 percent figure for the world as a whole.

Computers running on Windows XP can still be used, but Microsoft will no longer provide security patches for the software, leaving the devices vulnerable to attacks by hackers and viruses.

About 200 million people in China will have to take action to secure their computers.

Some 90 percent of the software used in China is pirated, making it impossible for many users to update their systems over the nearly 13 years that Windows XP was eligible for updates and other support from Microsoft.

More than half of Chinese users say they will continue to run Windows XP on their computers despite the fact that the devices' security may be compromised, the South China Morning Post reported, citing the results of a new survey.

The survey, conducted by the China Internet Network Information Center, or CNNIC, found that just 25 percent of respondents plan to take Microsoft's advice and upgrade to Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.

The existence of such a large number of unprotected computers in China poses a danger to the Internet because the devices can be used by hackers to spread viruses and malware around the world, ComputerWorld reported.