Are Software Updates Necessary?

Attack volumes are on the rise — and attackers aren’t particular about their targets. Small, midsize and enterprise organizations are all under threat as malicious actors look for any opportunity to compromise systems, exfiltrate information or encrypt operational data.

What’s more, the variety of threats is also increasing. From infected pop-up advertisements to emails with malicious links or attachments to text-based “smishing” scams, there’s no shortage of new vectors for attackers to exploit.

It’s not all bad news, though. By taking a simple step — making software updates a regular, predictable part of the IT process — companies can significantly decrease the chances of a successful cyberattack.

Six Reasons for Regular Updates

By taking the time to ensure software is regularly updated, businesses can mitigate the impact of common concerns and reduce the risk of advanced threats. Here are six reasons to prioritize regular updates.

  1. Keep systems compatible

As software versions change, so do their compatibilities. Consider Microsoft or Apple solutions: Once designed to only work with technologies of the same brand, they’ve since expanded to allow more interconnectivity. Regular system updates help ensure that disparate software tools remain compatible even as they evolve.

  1. Reduce the risk of unknown threats

Companies can’t defend against what they can’t see. This is the risk of unknown or “zero-day” threats — faults or vulnerabilities in software that go undetected until an attacker attempts to exploit them. By ensuring that systems are always up-to-date, IT teams get the benefit of the latest security patches, which often include fixes for newly discovered threats.

  1. Increase operational performance

Regular updates can also help increase overall performance. This is because software manufacturers often make improvements to their code over time that help improve memory, CPU and power usage. By implementing these updates, companies can ensure that they’re getting the most efficient and effective version of software tools available.

  1. Access new functions or features

There’s also a case for software updates in order to access new functions or features. For example, software providers may release new versions that are optimized to connect multiple services in the cloud or may add new features for users, such as the ability to directly connect with other applications without closing current software or opening a new tab.

  1. Defend critical data

Security software updates can help defend critical data from potential attacks. The reasoning here is simple: Attackers are constantly evolving their approach to exploit new vulnerabilities. In response, software companies release patches to address evolving threats, in turn helping reduce the risk of compromise.

  1. Ensure interoperability

Cloud and mobile technologies are now critical for effective business operations. They also pose a challenge: visibility. As companies move toward multi-cloud models and allow employees to access business networks anytime, anywhere using the mobile devices of their choice, it becomes difficult to track and manage these disparate systems. Regular software updates, however, can help businesses unify their software deployments with increased interoperability, in turn making it possible to improve visibility and reduce the risk of potential compromise.

Keeping Systems Current With CIO Tech

Are software updates necessary? Absolutely. Are they simple? Not always.

With CIO Tech, you don’t need to think about IT — that’s our job. With our technology support, cloud hosting, network security and co-managed IT services, we can help your company find the ideal mix of services and solutions.

But don’t take our word for it; check out some reviews from our satisfied customers and then give us a call — we’re ready when you are.

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