Program Update questions (what SEcunia did and did not turn up)

lynnalexandraOctober 9, 2012

I'm running Secunia on our household computers and have a few questions. I have just trusted SEcunia to tell me accurately what I do need - and thought it wasn't overlooking things - but here are my two questions:

1 - on my daughter's laptop (running Windows 7), it told me to update 6 programs - two were microsoft updates - and her itunes, and adobe reader x 10.X. I did the open office and adobe reader updates. But when I downloaded and clicked on the adobe reader x 10.x file, the computer warned that "AdbeRderUpd1014.msp" can harm the computer. So I did not install it. But I don't know if I need it and why I got the warning.

On my own computers, I don't use Adobe REader (I use pdfxchange), but her teachers post a lot of pdf's for homework assignments and a lot of those don't open with pdfxchange. (There are a lot of difficulties downloading and dealing with the formats of files from her school.) So I think we probably re-installed adobe reader bc. it was needed to open some of her school files. So is this update a problem? is it a problem with all adobe reader files - or did I somehow download a bogus file?

--------------------------------------

2) I ran the online secunia scan for my desktop and it only yielded three updates needed - two adobe flash and internet explorer. My question is that in the process of downloading some work software (to fill in medicare insurance forms) - without my awareness, it ran a scanner called software.informer (the Wot scores were excellent). This program found 52 updates that were available - and it provided links for those updates. I took a screen shot of the first page.

Now I'm cautious enough not to click the links on software I don't know. But I do wonder how come secunia did not discover 49 of these 52 updates - such as:

Acronis

Belarc Advisor

PDF xchange pdf viewer

microsoft office

I know I can go to the websites for each of these programs and check if there are updates. That is a lot of work for 49 updates. I think these programs probably do have updates out there. If so,why didn't Secunia find them? Can I trust this software.informer and use it's links to download the updates? Is there another program I can trust that would scan and provide links to download updates? or do I have to do all 49 individually (manually?)

thank you.

Lynn.

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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

secunia mostly focuses on security related updates I would not expect it to show you that things like belarc had an update or ccleaner etc.
For that adobe update I would just go right to the adobe reader program on the pc open the program and hit the update button in the program and let it look for the update.

I personally only use the secunia online scan so I can not tell you what the installed version does.

Right now there are about a dozen or so of these update scanners that I have seen pop up, I have no idea if they are good or safe or not. I am always very cautious with programs like that and especially one like you encountered that did a scan on your pc with out express consent from you that is sketchy behavior. Just because the wot scores are good is not necessarily an indicator, if the program is very new the website possibly has not been up long enough to have ratings.

Secunia is an antivirus company a security company that has been around a long time, that is why I trust the online scanner there. We use and recommend it on the help forums I am on all the time.

It is totally up to you what you want to use.
By now I think everyone should know that if there are adobe updates do them asap, if there are java updates so them asap, if there are flash updates do them asap, those should be known since we have said over and over some of the worst infections right now are coming through those so keep them updated.
You can also subscribe to one of the many help forums that provide all the info on what updates are being issued on what date.
Here is the link to the one at LzD, this is a good way to keep up to date.
Software Updates

or use the calender of updates
Calendar of Updates
a fabulous resource

    Bookmark   October 9, 2012 at 1:28PM
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SnidelyWhiplash

Miscreants direct their efforts toward security holes in widely used software. Raven has listed many of the problem areas, plus browsers, MS Office, and Windows in general.

It's essential to use a highly rated antivirus system with intrusion protection, and use common sense with where you go and what you do. If you do, any further effort or attention is really unnecessary. With the right settings, your main apps will tell you when updates are needed.

There's no need to worry about it or spend any time with monitoring software or web pages. These are low value added activities and are unlikely to add to your security, in my opinion.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2012 at 3:07PM
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mikie_gw

miscreants ... heh

    Bookmark   October 9, 2012 at 3:13PM
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lynnalexandra

Thanks Raven.

I hadn't thought about updating adobe from adobe itself. I'll try that.

The calender of updates looks very useful. I do have a question though. Other than just scrolling through all the dates, is there a way to search by the software name? like type in Acronis and see what updates it lists? would I have to join to do something like that?

Snidely - fortunately I've been following the forum here - and Raven's advice - for several years. So I do always update flash, java, and adobe.

I had not realized that SEcunia is mostly checking for security updates - not all program updates. And maybe I don't need to worry about those - unless I'm running the program and it says there's an update. I do update my antispyware and antivirus programs regularly and run them.

Thanks.
Lynn.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2012 at 4:01PM
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grandms

Lynn, I think you're doing the right thing. Be concerned with updates on the programs that involve security and update the others only when you need them. Acronis is something you would rarely use, so don't worry about updating it until such time as the need arises.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2012 at 9:32PM
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