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Why Patching is Important: The Importance of Software Updates

Locknet Managed IT
3 min read
Sep 10, 2019 10:00:00 AM
This post covers:Managed IT

Patching reduces the risk of network security breaches for your business

When the day-to-day operations of your business technology consumes most of your energy, it can be easy to disregard software updates.  Many businesses forget why patching is so important, but the importance of software updates is undeniable.  In reality, effective patching is one of the most critical ways to protect your network from security breaches.  But if you don’t fully understand what patching is, or why it’s essential, you’re not alone.

Peter Durnil, Support Center Manager for Locknet Managed IT explains.  “Patching is a way for application developers to enhance the software you work with every day, to improve the reliability and functionality.  It is also a way to fix a known bug or address a security issue that is discovered.”

If we lived in neighborhoods known for break-ins, it would be unthinkable to ignore the security of your home or car.  Yet, when companies ignore the importance of software updates and patching, it’s like leaving your valuables unprotected, and ripe for the picking.  “Patching is like closing the windows and locking the doors.  It reduces the risk of an intruder gaining access to your system,” Durnil says.

By making sure your business devices are patched properly, and by keeping appropriate patching policies in place, you limit hackers’ abilities to attack your network.

The power of patching devices to protect your business

When companies are not properly patched, they’re vulnerable.  And that especially applies as the remote workforce grows, as laptops that connect to unknown or open networks pose a particular risk.  “Often, when a mobile device, such as a laptop, leaves the office, their main source of protection from malicious actors is patching and anti-virus.  If either is out of date, it amplifies the risk of being compromised.”

Yet despite all the risks associated with insufficient patching, it’s common for businesses to forget or neglect it. 

“Patching is often tossed aside as something that ‘just happens,’ or can be seen as a nuisance.”

Think of it.  How often do you close reminders to update software without following through? If you’re like most people, you’ve done it in the past and may be tempted to do so again.  As busy as we are in the workplace, it’s easy to put off patching.

“Patching requires frequent reboots of your devices and can consume large amounts of bandwidth,” says Durnil.  “Because of that, end users often put off patching because they do not understand the importance of the process and what it does to protect them.”

The ROI of patching in the workplace

It can be hard to measure ROI when it comes to patching because it’s impossible to measure something that didn’t happen.  Stolen data, fines, a damaged reputation, loss of client trust, and business revenue: all of these can happen as a result of insufficient patching.

“Patching is the unacknowledged hero of your network,” says Durnil.  “It stops you from being the ‘easy target.’ While it does not guarantee no one will break into your home, it stops people from using the simplest method to gaining entry.”

With so much at stake, it’s easy to see why patching is so important.  But how much does it cost?

“Patching is not costly compared to the potential risk,” says Durnil.  “There are many tools available to ensure proper patching and it does require expertise to do it right.  Once the correct policies and practices are implemented in an organization, it can take only a few minutes a day to ensure patching is successful, as long as you know what you are doing.”

It’s easy to see why patching is important

With the very sustainability of your business at stake, it’s essential for any business leader to avoid underestimating the power of patching.

“It’s a process that Locknet manages at a very high level of expertise to ensure device safety, regardless of their location in the world.  We’ve invested a large amount of money in the software that allows us to do it and we have two employees who work on patching full-time,” explains Durnil.

The importance of patching may be hard to measure in terms of ROI, but there’s no question why patching is important.  Are you ready to put the power of patching to work for your business? Contact Locknet at 844-365-4968 to connect with an Account Executive in your area.

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