All USF Health/USFPG computeers are automatically updated by Health IS. Use this information for your personal computer systems.
Most desktop security incidents are centered around flaws in the operating system. As these flaws are discovered, vendors release patches to cover these security holes: by updating your operating system you ensure it has all the latest patches.
Updating your OS is perhaps the most critical and simplest of all the methods for securing your computer. Nearly all modern operating systems have some easy method to make sure you have the latest version of all of your operating system software.
Microsoft Windows is both the most popular and most compromised operating system available. While an out of the box configuration of Windows is not a secure option, Microsoft regularly releases patches (or collections of patches called "Service Packs") that address these issues, usually before they become a problem.
Like all software products, bugs are found in Mac OS X after it is released. Although OS X is a very secure operating system, not patching the system means your computer is vulnerable to compromise from a less than well intentioned individual. To counter this, Apple has built automatic updating into the OS.
By default, OS X checks once a week to see if there are any patches for its software. If there are, you will automatically be prompted to install those updates. You may wish to increase the frequency of those checks, however, or check for update manually.
To access the Software Update control panel, go to Apple → System Preferences → Software Update. Increase the update frequency by clicking on the first drop-down menu and selecting daily. Manually check for software updates by clicking Check Now.
Once you are finished, simply click the red X in the upper left-hand corner to save any changes.