Get Cyber Secure – Keeping your devices and Software up to date
- October 28, 2020
- Article, Cyber Security
Up to date Devices are of the utmost importance, whether that’s your phones, laptops, tablets or computers. Not keeping your devices and software up to date is leaving yourself open to problems, a lot of these problems can do severe damage to your computer systems. Not updating can make your device instantly feel outdated and ‘left behind’ compared to the capabilities that the device should have for its model. It also restricts access to most apps if you choose not to update as you aren’t seen as a safe user, you also won’t get to use the functions of the app.
A Software Update is a package designed by the provider to upgrade the software to the latest version, intending on fixing ‘Bugs’ (problems) in the software for which you already have a license to. Vendors update their software to address newly discovered security vulnerabilities. Organisations (including any contractor to the organisation) are obligated to install security-relevant software updates. It is in the vendors’ best interests to provide free updates to customers who have the latest versions of the tech they release. Customers won’t come back and may choose a different vendor if the brand-new phone they just purchased glitches out and doesn’t function as promised. Vendors increase functionality and ease of use with updates allowing them to gain your trust with a product. By developing and adapting its uses and features whilst keeping its core purpose the same, the vendor achieves this all without any inconvenience to you the user.
For example, if you have just finished your two-year contract on your Apple iPhone and Apple have consistently updated the phone software (keeping it running smoothly and efficiently) then why wouldn’t you sign a new deal.
Most updates are automatically installed when the newest one comes out. These updates (otherwise known as Patches) are very important to the system and without them over time it simply would not function.
Leading on from my previous point, all IT has a limited lifespan and without updates, they will stop working to their full potential and will become ever more vulnerable to cyberthreats. Companies release new models of your favourite products with new updates, they stop releasing updates on the older generation of IT, effectively rendering it obsolete and requiring you to get yourself a newer model.
IT provider support around patch management
Having a good IT provider will put you in good stead for keeping your software up to date, most will perform regular updates automatically as and when a new one comes out. A good IT provider will also check if a patch serves a purpose before automatic installation, some updates can be worse in the short term before they work out permanent fixes.
To achieve and maintain your accreditation, patch management must be considered and implemented as one of your key cybersecurity controls, Cyber Secure Canada dictates, “Ensuring software and operating systems are properly maintained is a critical aspect of good cybersecurity practice.”
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