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Everything You Need to Know About Patch Tuesday
In the technology news sector, you’ve probably noticed a trend where Patch Tuesday makes headlines at least once a month. This is generally the day when Microsoft issues patches and security updates for its many different technologies, and it’s important for your IT department to know when Patch Tuesday falls each month.
Patch Tuesday Explained
Microsoft is perhaps the most high-profile software developer in the world, and with that kind of reputation comes many different technologies that must be maintained for countless people and organizations all over the world. However, no matter how big a deal Microsoft is, there will always be oversights and mistakes made, especially with complicated technology front and center.
This is why Patch Tuesday exists; it gives Microsoft one day a month dedicated to address performance issues and security risks associated with their products. Every month, the Microsoft Security Response Center issues information and updates using the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures numbers on their website. These updates typically cover all current Windows operating systems and products which have not yet met their end-of-life or those that are on an extended support contract.
Patch Tuesday is the second Tuesday of each month. Patches and updates are issued at 5:00 p.m. (UTC).
Why Is It Important?
When they are addressed in a routine fashion like this, IT workers for businesses that use Microsoft products can prepare to deploy these patches and updates accordingly. IT workers need to prepare blanket installations to the entire infrastructure, so an official date makes this much easier to pull off.
Hackers also find Patch Tuesday to be helpful, as they can look through Microsoft’s patches and updates for code that might give away hints about other potential vulnerabilities. In other words, they reverse-engineer patches to target individuals who have not yet implemented the patches and updates, thereby punishing them for not understanding the importance of them.
Why Should You Implement Patches and Updates?
Patches and updates are issued so regularly because your business has so much to lose if you don’t implement them. Patches and updates clean up potential security concerns with your software that could give hackers access to your infrastructure, and with how crafty hackers are these days, new vulnerabilities and bugs are found all the time.
Even Patch Tuesday is not an infallible solution, though, as there are often vulnerabilities that can go months or even years without being detected, simply because nobody is actively exploiting them. In cases like this, security researchers happen upon the bug or vulnerability and address it in the next updates. However, if they find one that is being actively exploited, you can safely bet that Microsoft will issue patches or updates more expediently.
Does patching your technology give you some anxiety? k_Street Consulting, LLC can help out with these tasks. To learn more about how we can help keep your technology safe and updated, reach out to us at (202) 640-2737.