The Software Patch is a Nuisance and a Necessity

Services for Real Estate Pros with Inc

Valentine’s Day kicked off a big week for software patch fans, as Apple sent out a patch for its operating systems and Microsoft pushed a flurry of patches for Windows.

If you are not a software patch fan, you should be. The seconds you spend patching work and personal devices can save thousands of dollars and dozens of hours cleaning up from cyber criminals who exploit vulnerabilities. Yes, patches are a nuisance and more common than most would like them to be, but they are also a necessity if you care about cyber security.

Why Do I receive so many software update requests?

Responsible software makers continually evaluate threats to their systems and issue software patches to fix them. Apple was tipped off to a flaw in its operating systems that could allow hackers to install and execute code on an unpatched device. This patch fixed what is known as a Zero-Day Flaw or Zero-Day Exploit, which is a flaw that exists in software when it ships. Hackers carefully review every new piece of software to find vulnerabilities in security, as do researchers familiar with vulnerabilities. Apple issued its software patch in response to findings by a researcher who recognized the potential risk.

Microsoft, as usual, is furiously patching its most recent Windows release to close 75 security gaps, including some that would allow a hacker to bypass Windows malware filters or access system functions.

Patching Protects Against Phishing

Everyone who uses Windows or iOS should apply these software patches immediately. Doing so, on personal devices as well as work-issued devices, delivers two real benefits. First, it blocks a potential risk to cyber security that is known to and in use by criminal hackers. Second, it nullifies some phishing attacks by making it impossible for hackers to deliver malicious software.

The exploits patched by Apple and Microsoft may require users to visit a compromised website or download software that can exploit the known vulnerability. A software patch removes the vulnerability, so even if an employee clicks on a compromised link, the hacking attempt fails.

Every business should make software patches mandatory for all personal and work devices, particularly personal smart phones and laptops, which may access business WiFi or networks when employees come to the office. Software patches are usually sent out by software manufacturers automatically, but users may find them a nuisance and ignore them. Businesses can assist with updates by emailing staff when security patches are sent out. Ask employees to update their devices and provide links to download sites and additional information from manufacturers.

Patches may arrive at inconvenient times and employees may consider them a bother, but they are an essential piece of overall cyber security. Be aware that failure to patch can violate a cyber liability policy or expose a business to government fines if an unpatched exploit leads to a data breach.

Installing software patches is good cyber hygiene and part of employee cyber security awareness. Protect Now has developed an employee training program that changes culture by changing the way employees consider cyber security. We go beyond concepts and hypotheticals to help employees understand their attitudes about cyber security and the need to apply the same standards they use in their personal lives to data protection in the workplace. Contact us online to learn more, or call us at 1-800-658-8311.

Comments (19)

Sham Reddy CRS
Howard Hanna RE Services, Dayton, OH - Dayton, OH

Its a continuous struggle to keep up with upgrades to fix the flaws and it gets worse!!

Responsible software makers continually evaluate threats to their systems and issue software patches to fix them. Apple was tipped off to a flaw in its operating systems that could allow hackers to install and execute code on an unpatched device. This patch fixed what is known as a Zero-Day Flaw or Zero-Day Exploit, which is a flaw that exists in software when it ships.

Feb 24, 2023 04:08 AM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Good morning, Robert... this really is a constant battle to keep up with all the patches we need to stay safe.

Feb 24, 2023 05:24 AM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Hi Robert- I think  Apple just had a software update this week. Those are easy compared to Microsoft. 

Feb 25, 2023 06:06 PM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Feb 25, 2023 06:50 PM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

This is great advice and a reminder to do the right things in our business.  I am glad that Kathy Streib featured you. 

Feb 26, 2023 05:11 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Robert. I am no techie by any means but when it comes to updates for security purposes, they get my immediate attention. Enjoy your day.

Feb 26, 2023 05:22 AM
Leanne Smith
Dirt Road Real Estate - Golden Valley, AZ
Relocation to NW AZ with elbow room & more freedom

Updates are a nuisance and create more problems. I thoroughly dislike Windows 11 and it is not a good update.

Feb 26, 2023 08:32 AM
Anna Banana Kruchten Phoenix Broker
HomeSmart Real Estate - Phoenix, AZ

Wow I'm so glad Kathy Streib featured you in her weekly post Robert Siciliano .  I knew apple updated this week but I didn't hear about windows.  Thank you so much for keeping us all in the loop!


Update we did get windows updated - but FYI it took awhile to do so. Be patient!

Feb 26, 2023 11:54 AM
AJ Heidmann ~ CRS
McEnearney Associates, Inc. - Alexandria, VA
YOUR Alexandria & Arlington, VA Real Estate Expert

Robert ~ Okay, I now have software patch 'religion' and will no longer blow them off... thanks!

Feb 26, 2023 12:42 PM
Scott Schulte
Scott Schulte LLC - Phoenix, AZ

For once, I checked, and I was already up to date. Great post people are getting more and more creative in hacking. 

Feb 26, 2023 12:56 PM
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Realty - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

Hi Robert,

If these hackers put all this negative energy into doing good things, the world would be a better place. Happy Sunday!

Feb 26, 2023 02:43 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Thanks for the education and strong words of advice, Robert.


Feb 26, 2023 04:19 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald
Beam & Branch Realty - Granbury, TX
Granbury, TX 936-203-0279

Good information for us all. And, as many stated, we need to keep up.

Feb 26, 2023 08:10 PM
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667,, Broker/REALTOR® - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

Thank you for the reminder. Patches are definitely a nuisance and I've been known to put them off but will stop doing that!

Feb 27, 2023 04:45 AM
Dorie Dillard Austin TX
Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
NW Austin ~ Canyon Creek and Spicewood/Balcones

Good morning,

Thank you for the updates..patches are a nuisance. Apple just had another update but I haven't done anything about Microsoft and need to! Thanks for the reminder.

Feb 27, 2023 05:22 AM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Thank you for sharing helpful information for us to be mindful and act quickly when we receive software updates!  I appreciate that!

Feb 27, 2023 07:23 AM
Number Cruncher LLC - Overton, NV
Helping Taxpayers Resolve IRS problems

My brother works in this industry and makes sure I am always up to date!

Feb 27, 2023 10:25 AM
Ginger Harper
Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage~ Ginger Harper Real Estate Team - Southport, NC
Your Southport~Oak Island Agent~Brunswick County!

Patches are a part of what we have to have to keep going. Like it or not.

Feb 28, 2023 12:09 PM
Elyse Berman, PA
LoKation Real Estate - Boca Raton, FL
Boca Raton FL (561) 716-7824

We just do it.  It has to be done.

Mar 01, 2023 03:59 PM