Archive 2008 - 2019

Importance of Updating your Computer

by Matthew Payton

Cybersecurity threats are a constant theme everywhere one looks these days, however, it can be difficult to determine what’s necessary to protect oneself in a world that’s gone digital. For the layman simply downloading an Anti-Virus may seem like enough, however, despite having an important role this a misconception which leaves many unpatched systems vulnerable to attack.

Ensuring your operating system and the applications utilized therein are kept patched is a crucial first step towards mitigating risk.  Most operating systems will offer to either alert the user when updates are available or to automatically install them. These notifications can become overwhelming for some, however, particularly when multiple applications have been installed. Nonetheless keeping both the operating system, and the applications implemented therein up-to-date (unless otherwise specified by a security professional) is a crucial component to maintaining a secure system.

For Windows users applications like Secunia Personal Software and Patch My PC are free utilities which provide users with a more efficient manner to keep many third party applications up to date. Secunia once installed will provide a clean interface and solid automatic options which will run continually with a system. Patch My PC is a portable utility which requires no installation thus creating an ideal tool for thumb drives, and those maintaining multiple machines.  Where Mac OSX users are concerned Mac-Update Desktop provides a central location to assist users in ensuring apps, widgets, preference panes, and other software is kept up to date.

Updates may at times seem like a hassle, and at times they do present their own innate complications, however, falling into the trend of postponing or disabling updates can be a dangerous behavior. Ensuring software is kept up to date gives users a way to address the dangers of security holes which allow hackers to target system vulnerabilities and thus take one step towards mitigating risk.

Matthew Payton is the owner of Bit Bull Computer Services in Holliston.