Russia might be trying to hack everything and everyone, but Vladimir Putin himself is a little behind the technological times.
Russian website Open Media reported that Putin's computers in his Kremlin office and at his official residence are running Windows XP, the entirely obsolete system released in 2001. Microsoft stopped releasing updates to XP five years ago.
But even before the updates stopped in 2014, using XP was a dangerous proposition.
"Windows XP was launched in 2001, which meant the design and engineering of it took place in the late 90s into 2000, which was a very different world when we think about the profiles of the malware and the profiles of the hackers and bad people attacking PCs on the Internet," Tom Murphy, then-director of communications for Windows at Microsoft, told CNET in 2014. "It was a much simpler time."
Open Media noted that Windows XP it was the last Microsoft operating system approved for use on official Russian government computers. The more recent Windows 10 system is allowed only for computers that don’t hold state secrets, the Guardian reported. The Kremlin has not yet commented on why Putin uses such an outdated system.
Putin is reportedly wary of tech in general, and has called the internet a CIA project. Russia has moved to disconnect itself from the global internet. A new law this year created a national network and allows Roskomnadzor, Russia's telecoms agency, to shut the nation off from the rest of the world’s internet. Putin also signed a law this month that mandates all smartphones, TVs and computers sold in the country come with Russian software pre-installed.
Cover: Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting of the Pobeda (Victory) Organizing Committee in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin, Pool)