If you had been putting off upgrading to Windows, a new report could give you the biggest reason yet to reconsider.
Windows 10 is the most current version of Microsoft’s operating system and was launched just over two years ago.
Despite being packed with a host of new features and being widely regarded as the most stable version of Windows to date, there are still more people using Windows 7 than Windows 10.
According to the latest stats from NetMarketShare, Windows 7 remains the most popular version of version of Windows with an overall market share of 47.21 percent.
Windows 10 is the second most popular with 29.09 percent market share, with Windows 8.1 and Windows XP claiming a combined market share of 10 percent.
However, a new report reveals that PC users running older versions of Windows are putting themselves at greater risk from security threats.
This is because Microsoft has been prioritising Windows 10 over all other versions of Windows when it comes to rolling out critical security updates and patches.
According to The Register, any exploits discovered by Microsoft are being patched to Windows 10 devices, well ahead of the same security update being rolled out to Windows 7 and Windows 8.
This delay in updates potentially leaves hundreds of millions of users at risk from a cyber attack.
The news was revealed by Google’s Project Zero team who are tasked with finding zero-day vulnerabilities.
In a blog post, Google researchers hit out at Microsoft and said hackers could notice the holes in the different versions of Windows and take advantage of the delay in rolling out the updates.
“Microsoft is known for introducing a number of structural security improvements and sometimes even ordinary bug fixes only to the most recent Windows platform, said Mateusz Jurczyk, a researcher with Project Zero.
“This creates a false sense of security for users of the older systems, and leaves them vulnerable to software flaws which can be detected merely by spotting subtle changes in the corresponding code in different versions of Windows.”
“Not only does it leave some customers exposed to attacks, but it also visibly reveals what the attack vectors are, which works directly against user security,” he added.
In response a spokesperson for Microsoft told The Register:
“Windows has a customer commitment to investigate reported security issues, and proactively update impacted devices as soon as possible.
“Additionally, we continually invest in defense-in-depth security, and recommend customers use Windows 10 and the Microsoft Edge browser for the best protection.”