What are cache updates?

15:40:52 up 19:57, 1 user, load average: 0.37, 1.04, 1.12
03:40:52 charles@debian12:~$ apt search unattended upgrades
Sorting… Done
Full Text Search… Done
apt-config-auto-update/stable 2.2 all
APT configuration for automatic cache updates

unattended-upgrades/stable 2.9.1+nmu3 all
automatic installation of security upgrades

I think apt-cache is the repo syncing that happens whenever you run “apt update.”

Looking at the apt package, if you want automatic upgrades, use the unattended-upgrades package util instead.