6. Keeping Up to Date
Software and app updates contain vital security updates to help protect your devices from cyber criminals.
Cyber criminals use weaknesses in software and apps to attack your devices and steal your identity. Software and app updates are designed to fix these weaknesses and installing them as soon as possible will keep your devices secure. Bad guys and geeks collate public lists of vulnerabilities in every version and how to exploit them.
You’ll often receive a prompt on your computer, smartphone or tablet to inform you that a software or app is ready to be updated. Don’t ignore this message.
The few minutes it takes to download and install the updates could save you a significant amount of time and trouble in the long run, reducing the risk of you falling victim to identity theft.
Software and app updates don’t have to get in the way of what you’re doing. You can choose to install them at night whilst asleep when your device is plugged in or set your mobile or tablet to automatically update them when you are connected to Wi-Fi. So why not have a look at your devices and install your software and app updates.
Information can easily be found about how to install these updates from Apple, Microsoft and Google. For other products a simple web search should reveal how to keep them updated. If any product does not offer auto-updates it is worth considering use of a different product.
All software will have an ‘End of Life’. This is when the publisher of the software stops supporting it. This means that it no longer receives meaningful security updates and it becomes a massive vulnerability leaving you open to attack. You MUST either move on to a newer version or product which is supported OR protect that device – generally by disconnecting it from the internet FOREVER. Importantly:
Windows XP has been dead since April 2014
Windows 7 also died in January 2020!