Patch Management that Works
With how fast the business world moves, there isn’t time to stop and figure out how to patch a problem in real-time. A 12 or 24-hour delay in production while waiting for an ideal patch could mean major revenue losses. Having a patch management system in place to handle whatever issues come up is an absolute must-have in today’s business world.
What Is Patch Management And Why Does My Business Need It?
Patch management services are one of the most reliable ways to protect your company’s infrastructure against cyberattacks—which must be a top priority in today’s digital world. Ransomware attacks are a regular threat, and the need for a strong and established patch management process is more important than ever before. Still, many IT departments overlook this step as something to be concerned about only when problems arise.
Aggressive development deadlines often make it possible for software errors to pass through inspection and not be discovered until after a product is released, and in this can mean that even without a ransomware attack your software could be vulnerable and in need of a quick patch to keep your customers happy and your business operational.
The reality of the situation is that if you aren’t thinking about patch management until the patch is needed, then you are setting yourself up to be constantly working from behind. The last thing that you want to give hackers armed with ransomware is time, and that is exactly what they’ll get if you have to start developing a patch from scratch.
Here are a few steps that can help you build a strong patch management process:
- Strategically inventory all software in use company-wide so that you can be aware of what you are working with. Oversight on what software is permitted on corporate devices is imperative to strong IT management and patch support. While many software platforms will automatically update themselves, it is better to know exactly what your workforce is working with than to be caught off guard.
- Develop the parameters of your patch management policies and enforce them. Using strategic practices to enforce those policies is imperative. Your patch management policy absolutely must contain both critical and non-critical updates, and also should incorporate scheduled maintenance. A strong IT support network can help you develop this.
- Ensure that all patch updates are mandated and monitored. There are a lot of potential patches that could be used, and you want a system that manages exactly what you need, rather than working around the problem. Your IT support team can ensure help with this process by strategically forcing updates.
- Ensure that you have a team in place to test all patches before they are put forward and made public. This will ultimately save you time in the end by making sure that the problem can be fixed with the first try, and another patch won’t be immediately necessary.
- As the old saying goes—save early and save often. Develop a production backup that can be easily accessed when a vulnerability is exposed. This should be the last step before patch installation and should leave you with a quality backup of your corporate data.
- Have a system in place through which patches can be securely downloaded and deployed.
- Make sure that all patches are thoroughly tracked and documented to aid in future patch development.
Work With Strong IT Support
The best way to manage patch implementation is to work with a strong IT support services department. Your focus is rightly on your company’s interests and productivity, and a specialization in IT services and patch management may not be at the top of your to-do list—until you need a quick fix. Then you’ll realize how vital quality IT services are for your business.
Our advice: don’t wait that long.