Windows 2012 End of Life Support
Why Law Firms Should Be Concerned
Why you should be concerned
Without regular updates and patches, law firms using Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 are exposed to security vulnerabilities, such as ransomware attacks and data breaches. According to the SRA’s Risk Outlook report, the SRA received over 200 reports of cyber incidents in 2020 alone – this was way before Microsoft stopped providing those critical security updates and patches!
The SRA Code of Conduct requires law firms to protect client confidentiality and ensure the security of client data. By continuing to use an unsupported product like Windows Server 2012 or 2012 R2, law firms risk non-compliance with the SRA regulations and GDPR, which can lead to penalties and reputational damage.
Outdated software can cause compatibility issues with newer applications and hardware, hindering efficiency and productivity. For example, law firms may experience slower response times and decreased system stability, which can impact billable hours and client satisfaction.
A security risk but an opportunity to review the bigger picture
Rather than simply replacing the server, law firms should use the EOL event as an opportunity to review their IT strategy and determine the desired business outcomes they want from their technology.
By doing so, they can align their technology with their long-term goals, such as remote work capabilities, leveraging the latest cloud technologies, and improving operational efficiency.
In any event, law firms should take the following steps to ensure a smooth transition from the EOL server to their desired outcome.
Steps to Take for a Strategic Transition
- Assess Business Outcomes – Before considering specific technology solutions, law firms should identify their desired business outcomes, such as increased flexibility for hybrid workers, improved cyber security, or greater client experiences. Then, build a wider technology strategy around those outcomes.
- Evaluate Current Infrastructure – Once those outcomes and the strategy have been defined, you should identify all instances of Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 in your infrastructure to understand the scope of necessary changes and create a plan for upgrading.
- Explore Upgrade Options – If you simply want to upgrade to a newer version of Windows Server, such as Windows Server 2019 or 2022, then this is a possibility. Or, depending on your strategy, you may wish to explore cloud-based solutions like the Access Cloud, Microsoft Azure, or AWS. Each platform offers its own unique benefits, so be sure to research and compare them.
Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 EOL poses significant risks to UK & Irish Law firms, but it also presents an opportunity to review and enhance your IT strategy. By identifying desired business outcomes, engaging in strategic planning, and if necessary, partnering with a managed services provider, like Zettabytes, law firms can ensure a smooth and successful transition while optimising their technology infrastructure to meet their long-term goals.