Sometime last week users of QuickBooks desktop versions began reporting messaging indicating that they needed to update for a critical fix to a security issue identified in all Windows versions of QuickBooks desktop software (the Mac versions were not impacted, nor did this impact QuickBooks Online). Those messages were legitimate notifications from Intuit.
The message read, "Intuit has identified, and is implementing an update to address a security vulnerability in QuickBooks desktop software." It went on to say, "For supported versions of QuickBooks desktop, Intuit has begun the process of proactively notifying customers of the steps required to install an update, which is designed to address the security vulnerability."
The process for resolving this security vulnerability was to 'Update QuickBooks' to the newest release, making absolutely certain that your update settings included the 'Maintenance Releases and Critical Fixes' functionality. Intuit indicated that the update included password controls to verify that the person attempting to access an account is authorized.
After updating, some Users began to report an update loop error where the update doesn't install and keeps telling them to update. In one such case, involving one of my own clients, we uninstalled QuickBooks completely, reinstalled it from the last release download, and then the client was able to go right back to work without attempting the new update again.
In other instances users have reported problems with their company files after the update. In at least one forum, a QuickBooks ProAdvisor reportedly was told by QuickBooks Customer Service to NOT do the update. My initial attempts to contact Customer Support today to discuss these issues were met by busy signals.
Subsequently, an Intuit spokesperson told Insightful Accountant, "while a few isolated incidents have occurred due to the uniqueness of customers’ QuickBooks files, we are working with those few individuals to alleviate their issues. But they are not broad or wide enough to stop this important update."
Earlier today, Intuit's 'Update Servers' were not responding to product update requests; some users reported that they got 'server busy' or 'server timed out' errors during the update process. I personally got the 'server timed out' message when I attempted to update a version of QuickBooks on two different instances today. Apparently the update server issue is purely coincidental to either the maintenance release updates, or update issues some users experienced, because the same Intuit Spokesperson told me, "It is not true that we took our servers down to stop making the updates available."
So there you have it. I am doing my best to report to you, 'our readers', what is circulating in social media and forum channels, and what I am hearing from either my own clients, or QuickBooks users contacting me with their issues, as well as what I myself am experiencing. I am also attempting to be fair and report what Intuit passes on officially. We want you to hear both sides of the story and judge for yourself what works for you.
As with other maintenance release updates in the past, I almost always take an attitude of, and recommend to my own clients, 'wait and see'. Why dive right in when someone else can test the waters first.
I want you to be as fully informed as possible so that you can take the steps you feel are appropriate for both your own clients and your own operations.