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Update now against critical flaws

Update now against critical flaws
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In the arms race between software makers and hackers, every time the crooks find a way to worm their way into your system, manufacturers rush to plug the holes. But these plugs, or patches, only work for you if they actually get installed. Follow along and I'll cover the latest round of dangerous security flaws and how to ensure you stay safe from hackers and thieves.

Both Microsoft and Adobe pushed out several critical fixes that you need to get right now. Update your computer with these patches to keep your information safe.

Over at Microsoft, a whole host of important patches were pushed out. They deal with security problems found in the Windows operating system, Microsoft Office, Windows Media Player and Internet Explorer. If you use Windows or any of these Microsoft products, you really need these patches.

The security flaw in Windows Media Player is especially scary, because it could allow a hacker to remotely take over your computer if you play a video hosted by a malicious website.

But Microsoft wasn't the only big software company trying to help keep you safe. Adobe also pushed out an update for Flash Player that deals with flaws that hackers could use to take over your computer. I've written before that considering the ongoing security problems with Flash, it may be time to finally stop using it. In addition to today's updates, I'll show you how to stop using Flash on the next page.

On most Windows computers, updates are set to "automatic," but you should check to make sure. Click here to find out if Windows is waiting to install any important updates on your computer and how to set it to update automatically.

If you installed Flash with Google Chrome or Internet Explorer on Windows 8, it should update automatically. If not, you can learn how to download the the latest Flash update by clicking here and following by step-by-step instructions.

But do you really need Flash any more? Because Flash is installed on nearly every computer and in almost every browser, it's become a tempting entryway for hackers looking to attack computers. If hackers find a weakness in Flash that lets them break into computers, they can attack hundreds of millions of computers before Adobe releases a fix.

Now you can stop using Flash. But you have to change a setting in your browser so it doesn't try to use Flash when you visit a website that uses the Adobe plug-in. Check out this Tip that explains why and how to disable Flash on your computer to stay safer.



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