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Your computer requires regular updates to the operating system and to the various software applications that have been installed. Vendors such as Microsoft, Apple, and Adobe provide updates regularly as well as on an emergency basis when a critical need such as to address a security vulnerability arises. The terms patches and updates may be used interchangeably though some view patches as minor updates.
Even though your computer may appear to be running fine, it is critical that all updates are applied in a timely manner. Some vendors deliver updates automatically and you may or may not be prompted to apply them. If you are prompted to apply an update, you should verify that the software is indeed installed on your computer and allow the update to proceed. Not keeping your software current may allow malware to come through. Some malware makers have created malicious code which looks like an update window. Clicking such window may install malware. It is prudent to check the update prompts for spelling errors and overall appropriateness to your computer.
Your computer should download most software updates automatically. It is rare that you would need to download an update manually. This is usually done for specialized third-party software. When in doubt, please contact the CTS help desk for advice.