Keeping Your Applications and Programs Current Could Save Your Business

To many of us, a software patch is nothing more than an irritation. When a pop-up window prompts us to install a patch—a set of changes to a computer program designed to update, fix, or improve it—we view it as an inconvenience.

But in reality, software patches are incredibly important. They correct problems and help computers run more smoothly, reducing the chance of a crash. They address known security vulnerabilities, making applications (and the computers they run on) more secure. They can even save your business.

In 2017, the international WannaCry ransomware attack targeted unpatched versions of Windows 7, wreaking havoc on hundreds of thousands of businesses around the world. By encrypting data and shutting down day-to-day operations, this devastating strain of ransomware took hospitals and multinational corporations offline, interrupting supply chains and costing companies nearly $8 billion.

Three years later, the threat remains—and in many cases is even higher. Software patches are routinely overlooked by businesses big and small. A recent study by Ponemon Institute and Service Now found that 65% of organizations believed it was difficult to prioritize software patching for programs like Windows, Microsoft Office, Adobe PDF Reader, and JavaScript alike.

Just last month, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) revealed that a security gap in Windows 10 and some versions of Windows Server could lead to data exploits. In fact, more than half of all data breaches are still caused by unpatched software vulnerabilities and poor patch planning.

Verizon’s 2020 Data Breach Investigations Report found that ransomware incidents continue to rise, even as comprehensive patching and vulnerability audits continue to combat the problem. The catch? “Unless these efforts are sustained,” the report says, “the gains will likely be lost.”

Automated delivery of software patches and security updates is the best way to fight back against ransomware and other online exploits. Working with a trusted IT provider like CMIT Solutions, your desktops, laptops, servers, printers, and other devices can remain safe as experienced technicians review and deploy needed patches.

In addition, this thorough patch delivery is rolled out on nights and weekends so that your company’s employees aren’t affected by irritating downtime in the middle of the workday.

Beyond that, we understand that software patches and security updates represent just one aspect of a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy. This single layer of protection isn’t enough to prevent every malicious attack—especially as such attacks become more complex and sophisticated.

That’s why CMIT Solutions operates under the assumption that it’s not if but when a hack will occur. Our proactive IT monitoring and maintenance services are constantly looking for vulnerabilities in all systems, protecting mission-critical systems and the integrity of your data so that normal operations can continue, even in the face of a cybersecurity issue.

Many experts consider this enhanced level of protection “cyber resiliency”—or building extra layers of security around networks, operating systems, software applications, and hardware. 

At CMIT Solutions, We Consider Such Preparations Common IT Sense

Using real-time traffic analysis, threat detection, multi-factor authentication, remote access protocols, user management, end-to-end encryption, and automated patching, our cybersecurity strategy serves three main purposes: We defend your data, protect your technology, and empower your employees to safely do the work they need to do, at home, in the office, and on the road.

Want to learn more about software patches? Afraid one of your older Windows 7 or newer Windows 10 computers could be vulnerable? Contact CMIT Solutions today.

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