It's the second week of the month and that means it's Patch Tuesday time, the monthly delivery of fixes for Microsoft's quiver of software arrows. This month, they have targeted a bunch of issues rated as "critical".
Tagged With patching
Apple has released updates to three of their four operating systems today. While watchOS is probably of limited interest to IT professionals, the changes to macOS and iOS deal with bug fixes and "other improvements". For the users and administrators responsible for Macs, there's a fix that "Resolves an issue that prevents making certain SMB connections from the Finder".
Just when we thought life had become simple, with just one "version" of Windows to persist in perpetuity, Microsoft has announced that their half-yearly updates will be given different names depending on where you live. That's because someone in Redmond realised that the seasons are named differently in different parts of the world and that when it's Fall in the US, it's not Fall everywhere else.
By now, you'll know all about WannaCry - a ransomware attack that ran rampant late last week and over the weekend. While ransomware attacks suck - they can cost a lot to recover from whether you measure that in ransoms or time lost in recovery - the worrying thing about WannaCry was the attitude of many organisations when it comes to updates and patching.
Every year, dozens of companies release security reports, telling us about how the sky is falling - mainly because the people sponsoring the reports are in the umbrella business. But I was recently reviewing a couple of reports and a piece of data in Verizon's Data Breach Investigations Report stood out. Unpatched vulnerabilities are still a massive opportunity for threat actors.
When I started working in IT, back in the 1990s, our primary focus was on reliability first and performance second. Viruses were on the scene - Word macro viruses like Melissa were probably the most significant threat of the day. But as long as our anti-virus software was up to date things were pretty good. Then the world changed.
Windows Server 2003 reaches the end of its useful life on July 14 this year, with no more patches after that date. If you assumed that such a (relatively) ancient operating system doesn't require much updating, think again.
Over at Kotaku, my colleague Mark has the story of how EA-owned Australian games studio Firemonkeys shut down its forums after they were taken offline by a hacker.
Take a moment to jump back in your mental time machine to 31 December 1999. It was the biggest New Year's Eve for a thousand years. The dawn of a new millennium. But as we prepared to party, the world was also gripped by the fear that digital infrastructure was about to come crashing down around us.