US Airport Recently Upgraded From Windows 98 To Windows XP

If you had any doubts about how hard it is for organizations and enterprises to upgrade to newer operating systems, consider this. An airport in the United States was running Windows 98, in the not so distant past.

Even more fascinating is the fact that when the airport administration finally decide to upgrade these devices, they chose Windows XP — the recently retired version of the operating system that no longer receives security fixes and updates from Microsoft.

Need a little more scare?

The airport security employees were running an x-ray scanner (called Rapidscan 522B) to scan and check the luggage, and shockingly this was the hardware that was running on Windows 98.

This report has Billy Rios, a security expert working as the director of vulnerability research and threat intelligence at Qualys, talking about this at the BlackHat security conference, and explaining that some of the hardware that airports are using could easily be hijacked by cybercriminals.

Obviously, you’d be hard pressed to blame Microsoft for this.

It all comes down to the organizations and entities in question that are still running outdated hardware powered by unsupported operating systems. But this is the reality of the technology world we live in.

More so, when you consider just how much airport security has been amped up in the last decade.

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