Saturday, February 20, 2010

“Update All”: Securing your computers with Secunia Personal Software Inspector (PSI).

It's easy to keep your computers operating system up to date: Just activate Auto Update. But how to keep all the other programs updated?

Does this really matter?
Isn't it enough to keep my operating system and browser up to date and from time to time to update some programs? According to a recent study (PDF) 80% of the exploits are done by malicious PDF files. Another 18% are Flash exploits. This shows that the browser isn't any more the main target of the hackers. This means that all the programs must be kept up to date as much as possible.

How can this be done?
Obviously you can't run all the programs regularly to find out if their internal automatic update mechanism shows that there are available updates. You can't browse to the download page of all your programs checking if you have installed the latest version either.
This is where Secunia PSI (Personal Software Inspector) becomes an indispensable companion. This program scans your computer regularly and compares the versions of the installed programs with an up-to-date online database. It also helps you updating programs offering direct links to download the update.
The overview page shows you the score of your computer:

It is a stimulus to update your programs increasing your score. Will you reach 100%? This will be just for a short time. You have to use the program regularly to keep the programs up to date. It is worth while! It is a good feeling to know that your programs are up to date and you have the best possible security.

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