Within its June 2022 Windows Updates, Microsoft has released security updates to mitigate a critical Windows zero-day vulnerability known as Follina.
"Microsoft strongly recommends that customers install the updates to be fully protected from vulnerability," Microsoft said in an update, adding in a post on the Microsoft Security Response Center: "Microsoft recommends installing the updates as soon as possible". What is Follina? Why are updates important? What is the difference between update and upgrade? Let’s find out.
WHAT IS FOLLINA?
It’s a security flaw that can be described as a Microsoft Windows Support Diagnostic Tool (MSDT) remote code execution bug that affects all Windows versions that are receiving security updates.
Malicious actors exploited this zero-day can execute arbitrary code with the capacities to view, change, or delete data, install programs and even add new Windows user accounts.
WHY UPDATES ARE IMPORTANT?
Over time, as your company grows and develops, the systems and processes that you’ve implemented at the very start (no matter how good they were) need to be updated or replaced. There is always a cost to doing nothing. If your organization is relying on outdated and ineffective technology, there will be consequences.
5 REASONS TO UPDATE YOUR SYSTEMS REGULARLY:
1. Keep your security on point
Outdated software makes you vulnerable. Nothing stands between exploitable holes into your organization and cyber criminals. With the new software releases there are often notes revealing the patched-up exploitable entry points to the public. This makes your organization an easy target for hackers looking how to get to your sensitive data.
2. Boost your efficiency
Besides security, software updates offer new and improved features or enhancements (like better speed) perfecting the end-user experience. Normally there are professional developers constantly improving the software you are using. Why not benefit from it, while satisfying the end user and obtaining a competitive advantage on the market?
3. Increase compatibility
While new software is constantly being delivered to the market, your current systems may not always be welcoming for innovations, as it might be incompatible with them. It’s always important to get feedback from IT professionals keeping an eye on market innovations to ensure you can adopt new solutions with all of your processes running seamlessly.
4. Make your customers happier
What can be more frustrative than outdated and ineffective processes and user interfaces? Not only does it lend your company the reputation of an old-timer, it can simply make your customers go away. On the other hand, investing in technology and offering your customers a better experience you have all the chances to increase your productivity and efficiency. Your team will thank you as well.
5. Reduce costs
You may think that upgrading is expensive, but statistics show that older systems have more issues – and require more costs to keep them back and running. So instead of jeopardizing your business, that can simply fail one day, it is wiser to upgrade. There is always a cost to doing nothing, remember?
SOFTWARE UPDATES VS SOFTWARE UPGRADES
A software update (often called a software patch) is a free download for an app, operating system, or software suite that offers fixes for functions that weren't working properly. Updates can also contain minor software enhancements, for example added compatibility.
The most common update of the operating system is a security patch, issued to protect your computer against vulnerabilities and holes. It is normally a good idea to install security updates just right after they are released to ensure your system is protected as soon as possible in the face of threats that are constantly changing.
A software upgrade is basically a new version of the software. It contains some significant changes or major improvements to your current system. Often times, it requires a purchase, meaning you will have to pay for the latest version of the software.
However, if you bought your software recently and an upgrade is released soon after that, some software companies offer free upgrades to the newest version. Be sure not to miss such kinds of deals when signing contracts with your software suppliers.
IN A NUTSHELL
Whether you are a family business or a big tech company, the importance of keeping your software current is the same. Even Microsoft can have zero-days and when there’s easy ways to execute code directly from Office, people historically use it to do bad things. Considering all these risks, keeping your ears open and your software fresh sounds like a plan. Oh, and, yes! Don’t wait – update.