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Software and app updates contain vital security updates to help protect your devices from cyber criminals.

Install the latest software and app updates

Cyber criminals use weaknesses in software and apps to attack your devices and steal your identity. Software and app updates are designed to fix these weaknesses and installing them as soon as possible will keep your devices secure. 

You’ll often receive a prompt on your computer, smartphone or tablet to inform you that a software or app is ready to be updated. Don’t ignore this message. The few minutes it takes to download and install the updates could save you a significant amount of time and trouble in the long run, reducing the risk of you falling victim to identity theft. 

Software and app updates don’t have to get in the way of what you’re doing. You can choose to install them at night whilst asleep when your device is plugged in or set your mobile or tablet to automatically update them when you are connected to Wi-Fi. So why not have a look at your devices and install your software and app updates. Below are some useful steps to help you do this.

How to update your web browser

If you haven’t been prompted to update your web browser by the browser itself, just head along to the What Browser? (opens new window) website to check what version you’re using and – if necessary – download and install the latest one.

How to update Microsoft Windows

The best way to keep your PC current is to turn on automatic updates. Go to 'Windows Update' and check that your computer is set to download and install updates automatically.

You can find details on how to keep your PC up to date on the Microsoft Windows website:

Update your Windows PC (opens new window)

How to update Apple macOS

Your Apple computer will usually prompt you when a software update is available.

If you’ve turned this feature off you can check for updates in the App Store. Click the ‘App Store’ icon in the dock to open the App store. Once it has opened press the ‘Updates’ icon at the top of the screen and it will check options to install any available updates.

How to update Android on your tablet or smartphone

Go into the ‘Settings’ app, scroll to the bottom and select ‘About’. Choose ‘Software updates’ from the menu and your device will check for available updates.

Your Android tablet or smartphone should automatically check for updates to the apps you use, and download and install them directly from the Google Play Store. Sometimes you might get prompted to authorise an update, so keep an eye out and make sure you give the go-ahead.

How to update your iPhone or iPad

When the apps on your iPhone or iPad need updating, you’ll notice a red dot appear in the corner of the icon for the ‘App Store’ app, with a number. The number in the red dot tells you how many apps need updating.

When the red dot appears, go into ‘Updates’ in the App Store and press ‘Update All’ to get the latest version of each app.

You can also change your settings so that apps update automatically, as soon as a new version is available. In ‘Settings’ go to ‘iTunes and App Store’ and then press the switch next to ’Updates’. If you want the updates to only download when you have access to Wi-Fi, then leave the ‘Use Mobile Data’ option unselected.

Apple has a really good guide to updating the iOS software that iPhones and iPads run on. You can view it here: 

Update the software on an iPhone or iPad (opens new window)