The second Tuesday of each month is when Microsoft releases its security updates. But what else could or should you be updating? Not just your OS, but also your applications.
There's Adobe Reader with a well-publicized cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability in Adobe Reader 7.0.8 and earlier versions. You can either install an update, version 7.0.9, or you can install version 8, which no longer includes the vulnerable feature. And then again, you might consider uninstalling Adobe Reader and installing an alternative such as Foxit Reader.
Then there's Java. It was recently updated to version 6. You'll find it on java.sun.com, but you won't yet find it on java.com. For whatever reason, java.com still offers version 5 update 10.
Perhaps you updated your Microsoft Office on Tuesday via Microsoft Updates. But then perhaps you also have OpenOffice installed? If so, then you should update to OpenOffice.org 2.1. Version 2.1 now includes automatic notification of updates.
And if you still haven't updated your Internet Explorer to IE7 — it's no longer a high priority (at Microsoft Update). This month the update has moved to the Optional Updates section. Or at least it has on one of our production machines. That makes a bit more sense for those of us still waiting for IT's blessing.
Don't allow your apps to be the low-hanging fruit.