35 Days And Counting - R.I.P. Windows XP


Effective April 9, 2014, Microsoft will no longer provide technical support or security updates for the Windows XP operating system. According to Microsoft, personal computers running Windows XP after April 8, 2014 should not be considered to be protected.

This announcement means that covered entities and business associates under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 ("HIPAA") who continue to use Windows XP after April 8th will likely be in violation of the HIPAA Security Rule. The Security Rule does not mandate minimum operating system requirements for computer systems. However, according to guidance from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights, any known security vulnerabilities of an operating system should be considered in a HIPAA risk analysis. In other words, a risk analysis should consider whether an operating system contains known vulnerabilities for which a security patch is unavailable because the operating system is no longer supported by its manufacturer. Based on the statements by Microsoft and the HIPAA Security Rule requirement to have technical safeguards in place for electronic protected health information, covered entities and business associates who do not switch to another operating system operate at their own peril.

To minimize the risk of suffering a data breach, covered entities and business associates should:

  1. Determine whether any of their operating systems are currently using Windows XP; and
  2. Update from Windows XP to a newer operating system that is supported by the manufacturer before April 9, 2014.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Akerman LLP - Health Law Rx | Attorney Advertising

Written by:


Akerman LLP - Health Law Rx on:

Popular Topics
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:

Sign up to create your digest using LinkedIn*

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.

Already signed up? Log in here

*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.