If XP support has stopped, why am I still getting updates?

I thought Microsoft stopped supporting Windows XP, but I'm getting what appears to be a legitimate icon notification that updates are ready to install. I don't allow them to install because I'm worried it might be installing malware or a virus on my computer. I scan my computer regularly with Avast "free" which seems to be doing a good job. Please advise. Thank you!
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Dr. KlahnConnect With a Mentor Principal Software EngineerCommented:
Dave and rindi are correct.  Microsoft dropped bug update support for XP some years ago, unless you are on a paid corporate or government support contract.  However, they still send out monthly updates that check for the most common malware and viruses going around.

Those monthly updates may not be particularly useful if the system in question has an up-to-date antivirus.  If it does, updates can be turned off by disabling the BITS and Automatic Updates services.  That will save a miniscule amount of memory and CPU time.

Note:  some antiviruses will complain if Automatic Updates is turned off.

There are still some active updates that apply to XP, but they are not officially for XP; they're for XP Embedded for POS Systems.  The only way to get them is to have your system pretend that it's XP Embedded and go through manual Update.

Note:  Microsoft actively discourages doing this and applying those updates may cause unexpected system instability.  

XP Embedded Updates
Dave BaldwinConnect With a Mentor Fixer of ProblemsCommented:
Microsoft is still sending out the monthly anti-malware scans to all Windows versions including Windows XP.
rindiConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Maybe you didn't install all the updates before support ended. Updates until then are still available. For example if you install XP mode on a Windows 7 PC, you will get all the updates via windowsupdate which were released before the OS was declared dead.
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