Urgent: Update your Windows PC with these patches now to lock down serious security holes. Microsoft, Java manufacturer Oracle and Adobe released these urgent updates today. These three companies make some of the most popular programs and products on PCs around the world. Many of the patches deal with very serious security flaws that could help hackers break into your computer by exploiting flaws in widely used products like Internet Explorer, Java and even the Windows operating system itself.
Several of the patches are critical fixes to stop hackers from gaining remote access to your computers.
Microsoft is issuing nine updates in total, and three are listed as critical. The updates affect all supported versions of Windows itself, Internet Explorer versions 6 through 11, and Microsoft Office, so these are seriously important. The three critical updates fix "Remote Code Execution" bugs that could allow hackers to break into your computer remotely - even without a password! One of the critical updates affects Windows and Internet Explorer, while the other two just affect Windows.
There are also two "Remote Code Execution" fixes listed as Important, not critical. The first deals with an additional Windows bug. The second fixes a flaw in Microsoft Office, Microsoft Office Services and Microsoft Office Web Apps.
How do you ensure your computer is protected with these important updates?
If you already have automatic updates set up on your Windows PC, then Microsoft will automatically alert you when your updates are available today. Click here to figure out how to get these patches if you've disabled automatic updates on your computer.
Those are some serious fixes, but Microsoft is not the only company providing critical security updates today. Adobe and Java developer Oracle are also issuing their updates today, too.
Oracle's updates are typically more massive than Microsoft's because it issues patches on a quarterly basis, not every month. This round of fixes from Oracle includes 155 patches for its entire catalog of products. That is quite a few, but you really need to focus on the 25 that deal with issues in Java because those are the patches that will affect most everyday users. The Java fixes also deal with remote execution bugs in the software.
There are 25 security fixes for Java alone, of which Oracle states that 22 "may be remotely exploitable without authentication, i.e., may be exploited over a network without the need for a username and password."
Java is a programming language certain programs need to run. It works with things like chat sites, online games and programs like one of my favorites, LibreOffice. But, it's also a common backdoor that hackers can use to gain access to your computer. That's why you need to keep the program up to date with the most recent security fixes on your computer. Click here to learn how to update Java on your computer.
Adobe has announced nine critical security updates for its products. The ones most users have to worry about deal with Adobe's popular Flash Player software. Of the updates, some deal with Flash Player issues that could allow hackers to take control of your computer without your knowledge. The bugs affect Flash Player on Windows, Mac and Linux computers and Flash Player for Google Chrome and Internet Explorer.
Flash Player installed on Chrome and Explorer will automatically updated. If you have update notifications enabled for Flash on your computer, you will receive alerts from Adobe when an update is ready. Or, you can use this link to learn how to update Flash manually from the Adobe website.
Please take a few moments to update your system with these free security fixes. Trust me, you'll be glad you did.