Windows Server 2003 has been viewed as a secure and bulletproof platform for well over a decade, but the cyber security landscape has changed dramatically over that time—and new threats appear continuously. Sadly, legacy servers may be ill equipped to handle new threats, and organizations should seek server upgrades to protect both hardware and software against attacks. The plain fact is that when Microsoft ceases distributing security updates and patches for Windows Server 2003 software on July 14, it will become more expensive to secure legacy servers than to upgrade them for most companies.
The costs of maintaining legacy, unsupported servers against unacceptable exposure to cyber criminals will siphon resources away from IT budgets, especially if the organization has to implement new firewalls and intrusion detection systems. Plus, applications running on Windows Server 2003 will likely fail to meet compliance standards and regulations, leading to an additional cost burden to shore up security standards.