What do you do when you see those little icons and pop-up messages that appear in the system tray, indicating there is a new software update available for you to download and install?  Most people find such notifications and the process of installing new software updates insignificant and disrupting. The truth is, people ignore such notifications for various reasons, such as, ‘Do I really need to install this update?’, ‘My computer is working just fine, I don’t think this update is for me!’, ‘I don’t have time to reboot my computer’, etc. If you are accustomed to dismissing those update notifications, you need to reconsider that practice. Applying software updates is one of the most important things you can do with your device. In fact, if you don’t do it, you’re very likely going to get some kind of malware in your system and even get hijacked.

Why Updates Exist
Updates exist for a very genuine reason. When a program is developed, the software goes through rigorous tests and quality checks. The final version of the device is released to public only when the software vendor is fully satisfied with the product’s functionality and stability. Unfortunately, when the device is used by users in a real-time environment, they may come across several issues with the program and same gets reported back to the software vendor. To address those issues, software vendors write patches for that particular software and release it as software updates.

Why Updates are Essential
In order to get the best performance from your device, and most importantly, to stay protected against cyber-attacks and malicious threats, it is very important that you should not neglect any critical updates. Using an unpatched/outdated device is like living in a house with no locks on the doors, inviting unwanted intruders. When you ignore updates on your device, you are choosing to leave your device open to infection. Cybercriminals depend on the apathy of users around software updates to keep their malicious endeavor running.
Downloading updates and installing them can sometimes be tedious, but the advantages you get from the updates are certainly worth it. The good news is you don’t even need to manually download and install most updates for each piece of software. Operating systems and a majority of programs installed on your device can do the job for you with very little or no intervention. All you need to do is simply grant your consent when asked, by just the click of a button.

How to Manage Software Updates Efficiently
The best way to manage software updates on your device is to let the software itself do it for you. Operating system and other software, such as your Antivirus program, can be configured to automatically download and install updates for you. However, not all software offers an automatic update feature. Widely used programs like Java and Adobe® Reader® will not update automatically. The icon will show in the bar near the clock indicating that the relevant program needs an update and require you to activate them to start the update procedure. If you see such icons down near the clock, do the update as soon as you are able.
If your program supports automatic update, you must turn it on. If you can’t find the automatic update option in your software, contact the software vendor to learn how to do it.