Ok, so this might be a topic we’ve covered before (just a few times)! But it is a message that bears repeating, not least because there has been an excellent example of why users need to install security and software update patches when they come out. We know they can be a nuisance, and they always pop up when you’re in the middle of something really important, but they are there for a reason.
Overall, patches protect your computer. Patches to your security software, like anti-virus and anti-spyware are what keeps them working. Without them, you are more likely to have spyware and malware infections. They also keep malicious attacks out, no matter how remote the possibility may seem. Hackers target unprotected systems, so don’t make yourself a target. They also give you access to new features and product updates, so you’re not running outdated and old programmes.More importantly, they fix bugs. To find out what that’s so important, keep reading.
Around the 8th of April, an issue was brought to the attention of software giant Microsoft. A bug had been discovered within its most popular piece of software – Microsoft Word. The bug was a major security flaw, and was already being targeted by email campaigns and hackers desperate to gain easy access to thousands of accounts. By the 10th of April, cybersecurity firms were reporting attempts to distribute a particularly nasty piece of malware called Dridex using the bug. To give some context, Dridex is designed to infect a victim’s computer and snoop on banking logins. It’s been around a while, and was cited as the means for stealing over £20m from UK bank accounts. The fatal flaw within Microsoft Word meant that malicious software like Dridex could be installed on millions of systems.
Microsoft announced a patch to fix this bug the same day, to be rolled out on the 11th of April. Those users with updates automatically enabled will have this protection installed without even realising it. But for those who don’t have automatic updates turned on, and don’t check for them manually regularly, they could be at serious risk. This is the perfect example of why users need to be updating and installing patches on a regular basis. I know we bang on about this a lot (see our post about why security patching is more than just a bandage) but it really is a basic rule of using computers and the internet. Amazingly, there are still hundreds of people out there who don’t believe in updating and installing patches, usually due to the fact that they think it will slow down their machines. That’s why at All Your Computers we offer advice and ongoing support on all things security and updates.
So, if you’ve not been installing your security updates, I hope I have convinced you to start. It might seem like a hassle, but it’s a small time investment in waiting for that bar to fill with some serious benefits behind it. For more information on security patches, why you should update them or how to make it happen automatically, get in touch with me today for a free consultation.