Patch Tuesday a Constant Reminder of Vulnerabilities
Microsoft for over 10 years has released a monthly round of security fixes on the second Tuesday of every month; adopting the name Patch Tuesday. On this day, they release the newest fixes for their operating system and related software applications. According to Microsoft, sending patches only once a month simplifies patch management. There have been cases where they have issued more than 50 patches at one time, which becomes overwhelming for a business to handle at once.
Patch Tuesday IT Consultant Microsoft VulnerabilitiesMicrosoft released its new Edge browser last month and its already received its first critical patches. A total of 12 bulletins were issued covering 56 vulnerabilities. In addition to Edge, this month’s patches cover issues in Internet Explorer, Windows, Office, Exchange, the .Net framework, the Hyper-V virtual machine, Active Directory, and Skype for Business. Many, if not all of these, are programs that your business relies on daily for operations.
One question facing your business is how does your organization handle these patches? There are some myths out there that anytime a new software is released, security is not an issue. Our mindset becomes “it’s new and nothing breaks when its new!” This mindset couldn’t be further from the truth and could open your organization up to security breaches. Is your IT department trained to install patches on the day they are released regardless of the age of the software? Do they do the necessary follow-up on your systems to make sure the patches didn’t inadvertently break anything else running on your system? Patches are designed to help keep your system safe from outside attacks, but if the patches aren’t regularly installed or installed correctly, you remain vulnerable.
So what happens when a vulnerability or issue occurs the day after Patch Tuesday, or the following week? Most hackers can analyze patch codes and exploit vulnerabilities that the fixes were intended to correct. It becomes part of your IT departments job to make sure they continue to monitor their systems for any discrepancies that may occur, alerting them of any vulnerabilities. It is also their responsibility to continue to stay informed on what to look for. And finally, the issue of back-up comes into play. Is your organizations data protected and backed-up in case of a security breach?
This may seem like a lot to consider for monthly security patches, but Microsoft is a large part of many organizations networks and it is important to take all necessary steps to protect your organization and its data. It is also important to understand just because you implement a software or any product from a trusted brand, there are still things that could go wrong. The best defense, is to remain alert and take all the necessary steps to protect yourselves from all the unknowns out there.
Properly protecting your network and it’s data is a full-time job. Whether this be an IT staff of one, or possibly more, depending on the size of your business, this is not a job that can be ignored. If you don’t have the IT bandwidth to keep your systems protected properly, 2W Tech has IT Consultants on staff that are willing to help. Whether it is to just ensure the systems you are already running are safe and secure from outside attackers, or if it is to manage your IT functions on a daily basis so that your staff can focus on other issues, don’t hesitate to ask for the help you need. Our trained professionals can help give you the peace of mind you need.