This morning the Omaha World Herald ran a news story on how computer users can protect themselves from the latest software vulnerability in the widely-used Java framework.
Oracle released a patch that repaired the vulnerability last Sunday and the World Herald wanted to know if that was the end of the situation. Thor Schrock, CEO of Schrock Innovations, told the reporter that the update would end the situation for anyone who takes the time to install it.
Unfortunately many people will simply not do it.
When Oracle releases a patch for Java it uses an automated update checking system that is installed on a user’s computer. This update system allows Oracle to distribute the patch in a controlled way as efficiently as possible. For example, if everyone went to Java’s website to get the patch at once, the server may not be able to keep up with the demand. The automated download system allows Oracle to stagger the release of the patch over a number of days.
As a result of the delay from the automated update system, your computer could go days before receiving a successful update.
In addition, for the update to complete the user must authorize the update to install once it has been downloaded. This is usually represented by a pop-up window asking to install a Java update accompanied by an orange coffee cup in the taskbar by the clock.
Many users are so distrustful of “pop-up” updates that they simply close them rather than taking a chance that something will infect their PC. Unless the patch is installed the vulnerability will remain.
One of the recommendations in the World Herald story was installing the free trial of Secure Updater on your PC.
Secure Updater automatically and silently updates Java as well as more than 20 other common free third-party applications like Adobe Flash, Reader, Dropbox, and many others.
If you are not sure if you have the latest version of Java installed on your PC, install Secure Updater and let the free trial get you up to date. If you decide to subscribe to the Secure Updater service after the trial expires it is $49.99 for the first year and $24.99 to renew annually after that.