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IT Security Patching and Vulnerability Management

Basic vulnerability management tasks like infrastructure and security patching can easily be overlooked in mid- and large-sized organizations where IT teams are stretched thin and left to prioritize projects, strategy, and application-oriented tasks that have the greatest impact on the bottom line.

However, just as an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, the realities of security patch management tell us that patches beget patches and—if fallen behind on—will lead to poor performance, instability, and security gaps, all of which create costly, time-consuming problems. By any measure, vulnerability management that establishes automated, recurring patching processes can enable the IT team to focus even more effectively on money-making tasks.

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How best to optimize your IT security patching? It can be useful to first break down patches between those that address functionality or incorrect code in an application/OS, and those which address security. The first requires an understanding of how the applications and operating systems work in concert and, therefore, what new code enhancements may be beneficial. Good communications with key vendors are crucial in this regard.

IT security patching usually requires a more aggressive stance, typically requiring you to deploy vulnerability-assessment scanning software. However, these tools only find vulnerabilities that hackers could exploit. It’s the IT staff’s job to take on the crucial next steps of prioritizing and applying patches based on the vulnerabilities you uncover.


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