5 Examples of Legacy Systems

While there are many disturbing examples of threats posed by outdated technology, a surprising number of companies continue to rely on legacy software. However, the risks inherent in the old solutions often lead to large losses.

Who still uses the legacy system?


We conducted in-depth research to find examples of legacy systems in government, banks, background check systems, and businesses. Let’s look back at them to see the negative consequences they can have and learn the most effective approaches used to the modernization process.

Government Representative

A study conducted by Dell found that more than 70% of federal IT decision makers in the US, Germany, UK, Japan, Brazil, India and China use outdated software. Furthermore, half of government representatives surveyed said that their legacy software is past its expiration date. Curiously, COBOL is the most common language in federal governments, even though it was originally developed nearly 60 years ago.Case 1Lawmakers say the agency’s computer systems have worsened as a result of reduced investment in technology modernization over the past eight years, from about $14 billion to nearly $11 billion. During this period, the tax network became increasingly complex while the US population grew, which meant that the number of people filing taxes electronically also increased.Case 2The dramatic increase in unemployment due to COVID-19 has shown the US unemployment system’s inability to handle a large number of cases. It should come as no surprise that such outdated programs cannot handle the claims of the 13% of the US workforce that has been left without a job. The absence of COBOL programmers only makes the situation worse, as the US does not have enough experts to maintain the old software. The outdated software they use does not have enough space and is not flexible enough to quickly make system changes.


Banking is also one of the examples of legacy technology. The Financial Times reports that the shortage of experienced developers in COBOL, the system that powers most bank mainframes, will eventually force them to switch.Case 3The bank’s archaic IT infrastructure was built before the age of mobile banking, so the IBM mainframes used by RBS are “underperforming according to customer demand”.

Background check system

Just like banks, background check systems are affected by the increase in mobile traffic and diverse data sources. As a result, the system rarely works as it should and crashes. The system is often too complex to easily migrate it to newer technologies.Case 4According to Vice News, the organization had been operating without any IT security personnel for an astounding two years at the time it was compromised.

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Retail and other commercial organizations

You will be surprised to learn that many retail, web, and manufacturing companies use legacy systems, even though businesses are supposed to stay up to date in order to survive in the marketplace.Case 5In the retail sector, corporations spend 58% of their IT budgets maintaining legacy systems. The main reason businesses use legacy software is that sales terminals use Intel 286 computers. High-end PCs can have problems using old software. Another reason software modernization is being delayed is fear of cybersecurity issues. It is also necessary for businesses to be able to spend their budget on improving instead of maintaining outdated systems. software product. According to a Flexera report, these three IT service providers are among the top IT product manufacturers whose support status expires at the end of 2018. As IT pioneers, they created many languages, environments and operating systems. , many of which have become obsolete over the years. At the same time, these companies are the most important innovators in the development of technology, and they provide many options for mobility. But if that’s the case, why are there still companies using outdated technologies like Visual Basic and DB2?

Why do companies still use old software?

Research conducted by Avanade indicates that senior IT leaders believe that replacing legacy software can potentially reduce operational costs by 13 percent every year and increase the annual sales more than 14 percentAlthough most respondents (80%) believe that failure to modernize their IT systems will negatively impact the long-term growth of their organizations, but only one in three companies modernizing their IT systems. their software systems on time. Why are legacy systems still in use? Read more: why is my cat so super | Top Q&A There is a stereotype that business is a rational field, like a living being. At ModLogix, we believe that every business has a human face – or several faces – that influence the vector that grows the company and spreads their individual values, like Bill Gates at Microsoft or Steve Jobs at Apple. There are four main things that stand in the way of a business moving forward, and they are also the things that have a powerful impact on people’s lives: fears and circumstances.

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Fear of uncertainty

There is always a risk that a modernized system will not meet the needs of the business or that it will perform worse due to technology failures, and this risk often deters owners of current legacy software. modernization. At the same time, the variety of modernization options confuses entrepreneurs who are looking for better results at a reasonable price. This is a difficult question and the answer will be different for each company. Changing part of a system can make it more cumbersome, while completely changing it can destroy its business value. Even if the modernization is done well and the new system works correctly, there will still be a need to retrain the staff to use it. So we understand why starting such a project can be intimidating.

There are specific requirements for the software

Almost 44 percent Avanade respondents say they lack the budget beyond the IT department to convert. Do they have the money to replace the system? As a rule, modernization is the cheaper option, so if you’re short on budget for that, you definitely don’t have the money to develop an entirely new solution. However, simply having enough money to invest in a cross-platform software system does not mean that you will be successful. In some cases, outdated computers can at first glance handle the best. NASA’s computing hardware on the Orion runs on two IBM PowerPC 750X single-core processors. These dinosaur chips have been in use since 2002, and they are no faster than modern smartphones. But despite that, NASA still uses them and not because of budget constraints. The point is, IBM computers are reliable and that’s the most important claim in the space.

Fear of taking operational risks

Modernizing legacy software is a timely process, and the fear that it will disrupt business has deterred many companies from moving past it. Contrary to popular belief, the modernization process cannot cause business disruption, as the old system can be kept up and running while a team of experts work on the new and improved system. However, as a 2019 ProPublica investigation showed, many medical facilities use legacy systems that are not protected by basic security precautions and the medical data of 5 million Americans. can easily be hacked online. While the healthcare industry is considered an industry where software modernization is difficult to do, it should at least be done for security purposes. perform regular tasks. As a result, the company lost time and money as the team was perceived as less efficient in their learning time. According to research by McKinsey, only 30% of companies succeed while trying to implement modernized technology, and the ability of employees to adapt to new technology is an integral part of their success.

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There is a custom solution that still works

When businesses started going digital 20 years ago, companies created customized technical solutions specifically for their business missions and goals. These systems are still in use because they perform the necessary operations and appear to be more reliable and proprietary.


Legacy systems are still used because employees and business owners prefer them. We tend to stick with what we know because it’s familiar and what’s new is often “scary”. So there is a desire to keep the old technology where every button and every little problem is familiar and solvable. Another reason is that sometimes it is not possible to transfer all the data to a new system without losing some of it. Data is extremely important to some organizations and they are not ready to deal with data loss. And finally, the programmers who might run legacy corporate systems are simply unfamiliar with the new types of software. They don’t have the skills to use the new programs, so companies don’t want to invest in new systems and education. As we have seen in the legacy system examples, there are many reasons to prevent companies from investing in modernization. However, at some point, all outdated systems must be renewed, and there are five key signs that you need to do so now. Read the 5 MUST SIGNS THAT SHOULD TIME TO MODERN SOFTWARE to discover them.Read more: why do dogs eat horse poop | Top Q&A

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