Business Security

Avast Business offers protection for Windows 7 after Microsoft ends support

Katherine Little, 16 January 2020

Virus definitions will be updated for all Avast Business and AVG Business products on the Windows 7 platform

Whether you’re a managed service provider, reseller, distributor, or in-house IT professional, Microsoft’s recent announcement ending support for Windows 7 may create new cybersecurity challenges for you.

The critical aspect of this news — the fact that Microsoft will no longer provide security updates, fixes, or technical support for the Windows 7 operating system (OS) — immediately raises the cybersecurity risk for your customers and users. 

As you may have experienced firsthand, unsupported OS and software applications are much easier for attackers to exploit and that increases the potential for unauthorized access and attacks on IT networks, systems, and devices. This warning was also communicated by Microsoft in its end of life announcement for Windows 7.

So the question is this: How does this impact the antivirus software and other applications running on Windows 7 platforms?

Is your antivirus still protecting your customers and users on Windows 7?

After its release in 2009, Windows 7 OS is still popular — one estimate in January 2020 puts market share at 25.56%. Businesses may also be in different stages of upgrading to newer versions — Windows 8, 8.1, or 10.

How does all of this impact antivirus protection? Is the antivirus software running on Windows 7 still keeping your customers and users secure?

The answer is yes — if you’re using any version of Avast Business Antivirus or AVG Business Antivirus. We don’t foresee a fast increase in the migration of users to the newer Windows versions, and haven’t set any hard deadline for our support. Our team at Avast Business will continue our support of these antivirus versions for at least two more years.

That means that all antivirus software on Windows 7 (without SP1) or lower versions will get virus definition updates, but not the program updates and new features.

Through our antivirus support, you will benefit from strong, reliable protection — but it’s important to keep in mind that there are always risks using unsupported OS and applications, and these risks will increase over time.

If you’re upgrading your customers or users to newer Windows OS versions in the future, you can always transfer your Avast Business Antivirus or AVG Business Antivirus licenses to the new OS using an activation code or account credentials.    

Keep these tips in mind to keep customers and users safe

Here are a few cybersecurity reminders to improve the security of your Windows 7 customers and users:

  • Use strong and reliable antivirus. Ensure your Avast Business Antivirus or AVG Business Antivirus is kept updated at all times, especially for customers and users still running Windows 7 OS. Keep your automatic updates enabled.
  • Find alternatives to Windows-based browsers (Internet Explorer) and built-in software (media players etc), as these will no longer receive support in Windows 7. (Note: Google announced it will continue supporting Chrome on Windows 7 for at least 18 months.)
  • Regularly patch all versions of your software and applications.  To take the pain out of this critical, but time-consuming task, our Avast Business Patch Management Service makes patching and updates easy to schedule, apply, and manage in just a few clicks. The service is available for our Managed Antivirus solution or CloudCare platform.
  • Run regular scans. Our Smart Scan feature is available in every version of Avast Business Antivirus and quickly checks for any performance or security issues. 
  • Backup your important data regularly. Avast Business offers a Cloud Backup service through our CloudCare platform.
  • Advise your customers and users to always use caution when downloading files from the Internet and through email. Avast Business Antivirus offers a Sandbox feature that enables you to always run any suspicious files in a safe environment.   

If your customers, company, or organization are not able to upgrade to a newer OS yet —  such as Windows 10 which is fully supported by Microsoft, Microsoft has announced it will provide fee-based Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESU) through January 2023.

For more information about all of our endpoint and network protection solutions, visit our website today.