Software and applications are an essential part of what makes an organization operate. Each department may have programs specific to their needs, but each employee uses multiple ones each day. Email software, word processors, and accounting software are just a few examples of the hundreds that might be used in your business. For a small business, managing and maintaining them can be a challenge. If you don’t have a dedicated IT technician, it can be even harder. A critical part of software management is patching and updating. Without proper patching and updating, you run the risk of leaving your business’ network open to attack.
First, let’s talk about why software patching and security updates are necessary. Developers are always on the lookout for vulnerabilities in their software. When they find a vulnerability in the system, they will send a software update to the users. Since new threats emerge daily, every business needs to be current on their updates to stay safe. You should routinely check for software updates from developers. Improperly patching or updating could leave your organization exposed to threats and risks. Keeping your staff informed of software updates is essential to network security.
Let’s go over some of the common roadblocks to a proper patching and security update policy:
Members of the executive team, like the CEO and COO, expect to have a say in business decisions. Implementation of security solutions for IT is no different. If it’s something that affects the entire company, the executive team will be involved. While it’s feasible in a small business, having all technology decisions go through upper-level executives can take time. Especially with patching and security updates, you don’t have time to wait for a decision when your network is vulnerable.
To ensure you’re receiving the latest software updates, you’ll want to remain in contact with the software developers. Staying in contact can be as simple as receiving emails or notifications when a new update is available. Software updates could come weekly, or not have a scheduled release, so staying on top of notifications is imperative to keeping your software up-to-date. If you don’t know if you’re receiving emails or notifications from software developers, now is a good time to check.
Time and Resources
Having an IT department makes patching and updating software easier. When you don’t, this leaves our employees to update their software. If your employees are busy handling their primary responsibilities, they may fall behind on updating software. Even if they do it, there is a chance they don’t implement it correctly. This means a patch or update will have to be installed twice, wasting time and resources.
If you don’t have an IT department, a managed IT service provider can alleviate the troubles with remote software patching and maintenance. Managed IT service providers can stay up-to-date on all the latest security updates to ensure your company is completely protected. And the remote patching means all the work can be done without an on-site visit. This leaves you and your employees to spend more time working on helping your business succeed.