Payments analyst says whatever happens, customers probably won’t notice.
Banks set to miss the deadline to upgrade their ATMs from Windows XP have four options open to them, claims IDC.
Reports abound that high street names including Lloyds, RBS, HSBC and Barclays are about to pay up to £60m each to Microsoft for custom XP support once the tech firm ditches its most popular operating system on April 8.
While XP will continue to function, Microsoft will no longer provide support for it, but banks consumed with meeting various demanding regulations are due to miss the deadline to move to another OS like Windows 7.
IDC analyst Marc DeCastro denied the end of XP support necessarily correlates to any security issues for the banks, but claimed the institutions are guilty of letting the problem slide in favour of investing in other technologies.
He added: "The reality is that most consumers are not really going to notice any changes, with the exception of perhaps an accelerated schedule of upgrading ATM’s by some institutions.
"[They] should already have a plan in place today on how they are addressing this both in the short term and in the long term."
DeCastro said these plans likely come in the form of one of four available options.
One – "The first, and least likely is to do nothing," DeCastro told CBR. "By doing nothing, the bank runs the risk of running a non-payment card industry (PCI) compliant device and could face fines, however it does not mean that once support ends that the ATMs do not run anymore."
Two – "The next option is to arrange for an upgrade to the operating system while keeping the ATM pretty much in tact. While this strategy will work, it will take some time and expense to visit the numerous non-compliant ATMs."
Three – "Another option is to find a middleware solution that allows the bank to keep running the ATM on XP and provide the necessary security parameters required for PCI compliance.
"This would allow the financial institution to take a more structured approach to their ATM strategy, however does introduce another layer of cost."
Four – "The final option is the entire upgrade of the ATM to the latest and greatest applications and operating systems."