After a legendary dozen year run, Microsoft will stop providing security patches for Windows XP on April 8, 2014. Without Microsoft’s protection, all those WinXP PCs will have targets painted on their hard drives.
Nearly 30 percent of Internet-connected PCs still run Windows XP, and no, they won’t die that day. They’ll continue running like normal, but they’ll be rotting inside, becoming increasingly full of security holes.
You should upgrade from Windows XP right now if at all possible—but not everyone can cut the XP cord so completely. If you can’t upgrade, there are some things you can do to protect yourself. Make no mistake: These tricks are like sticking your finger in a leaking dam. They’ll help a bit, but the dam is crumbling and it’s time to get out of the way.