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Security & privacy

Update your PC! Patch Tuesday fixes nearly 50 software issues

If you don’t know by now, the second Tuesday of every month has officially become known as Patch Tuesday. Most software developers chose this day to release security patches and firmware updates. Tap or click here for seven free alternatives to Microsoft Word.

Microsoft is rolling out a Windows update for February to correct nearly 50 flaws. But what makes the month of love unique is that there are no critical issues — although there is one bothersome zero-day.

Keep reading for details on this month’s Patch Tuesday update and how to get it.

Here’s the backstory

The latest update made available to Windows users fixes 48 vulnerabilities. Some of the problems the update fixes are Remote Code Execution flaws, where hackers can infiltrate your computer by activating malicious code.

Elevation of Privilege flaws made up a third of the patch, where criminals can change the settings on your computer to give them access to your files and data. While 48 flaws isn’t a small number, it is a 50% reduction from January. Compared to the average vulnerabilities of the last 12 months, it is 36% less.

The most problematic flaw is CVE-2021-44142, which has a severity score of 9.9. Found in the Samba platform that allows Windows and Linux users to share files and printers, it can be particularly devastating.

Hackers can use the unpatched vulnerability to remotely execute code with root privileges on corporate servers. That means criminals can then read, modify or delete files, query users, or install malware.

What you can do about it

We advocate keeping your operating system up to date, whether for your personal computer, tablet or mobile phone. Not only are you protected from the latest vulnerabilities and bugs, but it often includes cool new features.

To update your Windows PC, follow the steps below:

  • Tap the Windows button
  • Click on Settings
  • Select Update & Security
  • By default, the Windows Update page will be displayed
  • If an update is available, click the Install Now button

A crucial part of staying protected is also to have a robust antivirus program on all your devices. We recommend our sponsor, TotalAV.

Right now, get an annual plan of TotalAV Internet Security for only $19 at ProtectWithKim.com. That’s over 85% off the regular price.

Keep reading

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