Technology plays an increasingly integral role in the world of business, especially for city leaders in commerce and finance such as Miami. As the 12th largest urban economy in the US, the metro area of Miami is a booming center for modern businesses.

As competition grows in the city, however, Miami businesses face risks associated with failing to stay ahead of the curve. One of the most significant IT developments for businesses to take stock of is the end of support for Microsoft Windows 7. From January 2020, any devices still running Windows 7 will not receive support or security updates, leaving businesses who haven’t yet upgraded exposed and vulnerable to the latest cybersecurity threats.

If your Miami business hasn’t already, now is the time to upgrade to Windows 10 from Windows 7. Here’s a useful guide that outlines the potential perils of Windows 7 and how you could benefit from using an IT company in Miami to upgrade to Windows 10 as soon as possible:

Windows 7 Cybersecurity Concerns

Microsoft is effectively pushing Windows 7 into obsolescence after announcing that they will no longer be supporting the OS after January 2020. While there will be a fee payable per device to use the system after the deadline, the fees are steep, and eventual upgrades will still be necessary. Most crucially for businesses in Miami, this means that security updates will cease to be provided. 

Cybercrime is one of the most potent threats to modern-day businesses, and it doesn’t just put large-scale corporations at risk. Small and medium-sized businesses are also targets. Forbes even estimates that the global cost of cybercrime will reach $6 trillion by 2021. 

The trouble with wholesale changes in operating systems like those proposed by Microsoft is that they require action across the board. If you have an office, for example, with hundreds of computers and additional devices, you’ll need to ensure you update every single device by the time Microsoft support comes to an end. Even if you just have one device that is outdated, you run the risk of encountering security threats that could jeopardize the safety of the entire system. 

Security breaches can be costly in terms of your balance sheets, but also for your brand image and reputation. Clients and potential customers want to be able to trust the companies they choose to shield and protect their data and personal information in an appropriate manner. 

Cybersecurity Laws and Regulations

If your business is required to follow cybersecurity regulations, using Windows 7 will almost certainly make your business non-compliant and land you in legal trouble. That’s why every business is advised to migrate to Windows 10 before Microsoft pulls the plug on user support for Windows 7, and particularly companies or organizations that are required to comply with data protection and privacy regulations by law. 

If you operate a healthcare company or a medical office, for example, you must ensure that the update is complete before January 2020 to satisfy HIPAA compliance requirements. Windows 10 offers a robust security package and is compatible with HIPAA regulations. Once Microsoft support ends for Windows 7, systems will be susceptible to attacks and confidential and sensitive data will no longer be protected. 

Windows 10 Security Benefits

Windows 10 is designed to provide the continual support and cybersecurity updates no longer offered by Windows 7. What’s more, Windows 10 protects against more sophisticated threats that have been recently developed—a task Windows 7 simply cannot achieve. This is the most supported system Microsoft has ever released, and users will be provided with frequent updates, for both security and otherwise.

Microsoft also boasts that Windows 10 has greater application and program compatibility than past operating systems, meaning you won’t have to worry about changing decade-old processes when you make the switch. Windows 10 is also reported to be more user-friendly overall, which can enhance your end-user productivity. 

Preparing Your Business for Windows 10 Migration

Migrating and updating all your devices may be a daunting prospect, but there are some simple ways to reduce stress and to ensure your business continues to run smoothly during the process:

  • Plan ahead and starting early.
  • Carry out a devices audit and check if there are any devices that are not compatible before you start the upgrade.
  • Migrate gradually so you can maintain business production while the update is in progress.
  • Implement test devices to predict potential challenges with Windows 10 and prevent them.
  • Provide staff training focused on how to use Windows 10 and how to enhance data security.
  • Seek expert advice from an IT company in Miami.

The Benefits of Hiring a Managed Service Provider (MSP)

Hiring a reliable managed service provider such as ARK Solvers is an excellent way to ensure your Miami business transitions from Windows 7 to Windows 10 seamlessly. An expert IT company in Miami can handle every aspect of the process, checking whether existing systems are Windows 10 compatible and designing and implementing a plan that enables you to maintain high levels of productivity throughout. MSPs also provide teams of experts that will be on hand to answer questions and provide advice once the new systems are in place. 

If you haven’t already started the migration process, now is the time to upgrade. This might seem like a mammoth task, but a managed service provider can help to make the transition seamless and painless. Contact our experts at ARK Solvers today for more information on how we can assist your business during a Windows 10 upgrade.

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