3 – Pre­venting with soft­ware updates

Who better to look after your pro­grammes' secu­rity than their man­u­fac­turers? Main­tain your system, soft­ware and apps, and make sure to reg­u­larly run the latest updates.

The most impor­tant points to remember:

  • Only ever install soft­ware and apps you actu­ally need, and make sure to exclu­sively down­load these from a manufacturer’s page or an offi­cial store.
  • Acti­vate the auto­matic update fea­ture not just for your oper­ating system, but also all pro­grams and apps installed.
  • Only ever use the latest browser ver­sion to surf the Internet.

Out­dated soft­ware often suf­fers from vul­ner­a­bil­i­ties, making it easy for attackers to take con­trol of a device. Soft­ware man­u­fac­turers will cor­rect any such vul­ner­a­bil­i­ties and offer patches in the shape of pro­gram updates.

Only ever install soft­ware and apps you actu­ally need

Only install soft­ware and apps you actu­ally need, and ensure that they orig­i­nate from rep­utable sources, i.e. directly from man­u­fac­turers or an offi­cial store (e. g. Apple App Store or Google Play Store). You should also peri­od­i­cally check which soft­ware and apps you are still using and de-install any appli­ca­tions which are obso­lete or which you no longer use. Every addi­tional bit of soft­ware or app on your device con­sti­tutes yet another vul­ner­a­bility.

Keep your devices up-to-date

Please ensure you always use the most up-to-date ver­sion of any soft­ware. The main­stay is an up-to-date oper­ating system. But all other soft­ware installed (such as browsers like Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome, or Adobe Acrobat Reader) must always be kept up-to-date, too. Usu­ally, this is easily done and doesn’t require much effort: Once you acti­vate their respec­tive update func­tions, these pro­grams or your oper­ating system will reg­u­larly look for the latest updates, often also installing these auto­mat­i­cally.

In Win­dows 10, Win­dows updates are acti­vated by default. For you, this means updates are down­loaded and installed auto­mat­i­cally as soon as they become avail­able.

Under Advanced Options, you should also acti­vate option “Give me updates for other Microsoft prod­ucts when I update Win­dows”, so that other Microsoft prod­ucts, such as Office, are also auto­mat­i­cally updated.

Older Win­dows ver­sions - End of life

You should no longer be working with Win­dows XP, Win­dows Vista and Office 2007 by now, as Microsoft has ceased sup­port for this soft­ware. This means secu­rity updates are no longer made avail­able to pro­tect your com­puter against viruses, worms, Tro­jans and other mal­ware.

Win­dows life­cycle

Pro­tect your data and all your devices with the help of our “5 steps for your dig­ital secu­rity”:

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