CANTON, Ohio (2/7/14)--As the April 8 sunset of Windows XP draws near, credit unions are evaluating their ATM fleets for operating system upgrades or machine replacements.
The U.S. has about 420,000 ATMs, and about 95% of those ATMs will be affected by the need to upgrade to Windows 7, according to Dean Stewart, senior director of product management, Diebold. "I've not encountered anyone who doesn't know about it," he told
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Microsoft is discontinuing support for XP, meaning it will no longer provide regular security patches or technical assistance and support. If credit unions don't upgrade ATMs, they face potential problems such as degradation in product and service delivery, application incompatibilities, and increased chances of date theft, according to a statement from the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council.
Older machines don't have the hardware that can support the newer, faster software so some financial institutions will replace some or all of their ATM fleets, he said. "There certainly is a large flurry globally as well as the U.S. for upgrades.
"It's part of your capital plan--evaluate your needs, review your fleet, determine your investment. Credit unions should approach it as any other compliance issue," Stewart added.
The fear of hackers, malware and other security threats is understandable, credit unions also need to be aware of Payment Card Industry (PCI) Security Standards Council compliance.
"If you are a financial institution, you really want to put this on your to-do list for 2014," Diebold CEO Andy Mattes told
(Jan. 30). "The bad guys won't show up the next morning, but with every month that passes, risk will increase," he added.
XP has been the operating system for most ATMs since 2003, but by upgrading to Windows 7, financial institutions also can set the stage for opportunities. Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) adoption is just around the corner in 2015. Contactless near-field-communication (NFC) transactions and multi-touchscreen technologies are in the wings, Stewart said.
"A lot of people are looking at adding EMV at the same time as the Windows 7 upgrade," he said, adding that even if they aren't implementing EMV right away, their ATMs will be ready when they are.
Diebold, a CUNA Strategic Services alliance provider, offers Operation 411, a website that addresses operating system upgrades; EMV adoption; PCI Security Standards Council compliance; and Americans with Disabilities Act compliance.