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3 Steps to Ace Software Updates and Keep Your Information Secure 

This is the latest installment of our Cybersecurity Awareness Month series of blog articles designed to give you helpful tips and best practices to keep your data safe from harm. Previous editions:

As we continue our coverage of Cybersecurity Awareness Month and how everyone can see themselves in cyber, we turn to another seemingly simple but extremely important way everyone can protect their data from cyberattacks: software updates.

Yes, the software updates you see pop up when you’re using software or an application. Software updates generally serve three purposes:

  1. Fix general software problems or bugs that have been brought to light by users.
  2. Supply new security patches to prevent criminals from successfully launching cyberattacks.
  3. Ensure you have the latest features to make the most of the software or app you’re using.

While you may believe they come at the most inappropriate times when you’re in the middle of a task, making sure you heed the call to update to the latest versions of the software ensure you can help protect against known and unknown vulnerabilities and potential attack vectors hackers can use to infiltrate your personal data.

software updates

How? Hackers can use unpatched applications to exploit vulnerabilities, gaining access to your device or network to wreak havoc. Awareness of just how important software updates are and what to watch out for is a great first step for those responsible for information security. Make sure to share these tips:

Get the update directly from the source: When you get the prompt to update your software, make sure it’s coming from the company that created it. Avoid using hacked, pirated, or unlicensed versions of software, because they often contain malware and cause more problems.

Set it and forget it: Most software now comes with the option to update automatically. If you have this choice, set it so you don’t have to worry about remembering to initiate the software update. If you don’t have the option, set a reminder for yourself to install it at a time when you’re not using it for your day-to-day activity.

Don’t fall for imitators: We’ve all seen pop-up windows when visiting a website or opening software that asks you to download or complete a form without delay. When this happens, they’re usually fake and you shouldn’t take the action. A browser will only warn you not to move forward or stay on a specific web address when it’s not secured or could contain malware.


Once you’ve started to make your users aware of the benefits of prompt software updates, make sure you have a solid policy in place to keep your systems safe:

  1. Enforce a software-approved list to clearly define which software can and will be used.
  2. Scan your network often to ensure there are no unwanted applications that have managed to find their way into your network.
  3. Only use software currently supported by the vendor.

At AvePoint, our Privacy, Security and Risk (PSR) team enforces a patch management policy which has been reviewed and certified against ISO 27001:2013 standards, SOC, IRAP and other governing bodies recognized around the globe.

To learn more about how we place safety at the heart of our customers and our people, visit the AvePoint Trust Center.

Subscribe to our blog to follow the rest of our Cybersecurity Awareness Month coverage.

Henry F.
Henry F.
Henry is an Information Technology Manager at AvePoint.
Alex Varvel
Alex Varvel
Alex works on AvePoint's Information Technology team, specializing in process improvement and automation with a focus in the domains of cybersecurity, compliance and cloud technologies.

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