t is common for busy employees to snooze their computers’ reminders regarding software updates and patches. “Patch fatigue” is a common occurrence at many companies. Employees don’t want to sacrifice their time to install important updates that maintain an optimal level of computer and network security.
Dangers of Patch Fatigue
Unfortunately, patch fatigue can have significant consequences for your business. By forgoing essential software updates, you leave your network and software vulnerable to security threats. Software vulnerabilities are weak portions of a program hackers can target to infect your computer with malware. Once it is on your computer, hackers use the malware to steal sensitive information or even gain complete access to your computer.
Snoozing your software updates for a few days may seem harmless. However, if the patch fixes a known software vulnerability, it is critical to install updates as soon as they are available. In 2017, a data breach at Equifax exposed confidential information for 143 million individuals. Hackers manipulated a vulnerable spot in Equifax’s web application to access the company’s sensitive data. What many individuals don’t know is an update was available to patch this vulnerability, but Equifax neglected to keep its software updated.
Benefits of Keeping Up with Your Computer and Network Security
In addition to fixing known security risks, computer and network security updates also add new software features that improve the efficiency and functionality of your programs. These patches make it easier for employees to do their jobs in the long run. Upgrades also remove old or outdated features that slow down your software and repair known software bugs.
Implementing the following procedures will help to combat patch fatigue:
- When possible, opt for automatic installation of software updates.
- Incorporate time into your employees’ workdays to install patches.
- Educate employees on company rules and procedures regarding software updates.
- Implement and follow a schedule to regularly check all computers and mobile devices for updates.
If you need help fighting patch fatigue in your company, contact Network Security Associates today at 702-547-9800 for recommendations concerning your organization’s computer and network security.