The “End-of-Life” for Adobe Flash Player

As of 31 December 2020, Adobe has ended support for Adobe Flash Player, and from 12 January 2021, Flash-based content will be blocked from running. In this article, you can read why Adobe strongly recommends all users to uninstall all Flash Player installations.

The announcement about ending support for the Adobe Flash Player was made back in July 2017. This is because Flash had increasingly, become more a security risk than an innovative standard, but Flash was still very widespread so Adobe decided to phase it out gradually. Since then, a number of different browsers have already blocked the plug-in.

Why give a warning to uninstall?

Over the last few months, Flash users have received more and more alerts in Chrome, Firefox etc., and even Flash Player itself has issued a reminder to uninstall it. Nevertheless, in the course of our Incident Responses and Compromise Assessments, me and my cyber security team are still finding many systems where Flash Player is installed. In our view (and in Adobe's view as well), these systems constitute a major security risk, and they are a ticking time bomb.

In the past, Flash always had to contend with security issues and regularly had to resolve them by means of security updates. We anticipate that, now that support has ended and there are no longer any security updates, the situation will get even worse.

Is Adobe Flash Player still installed on my systems?

If you do not have a central software management system or if your users are able to install software themselves, there is a good chance that there are still Flash Player installations within your network. With our Compromise Assessment, not only do we detect any traces of attacks, but we also check your systems for security risks such as obsolete software, configuration errors or existing deviations from best practices using solutions (Endpoint Detection & Response). This enables us to find hidden “flash traces hidden deep within your systems.

Our tip for your personal PCs: Use the Flash Player Uninstaller to uninstall the software. The tool deletes the Flash Player together with all its components and ensures that any fragments are completely erased from the system. The optional Windows update also eliminates Flash from Windows 10. On top of this, browser updates in the next few weeks will also ensure that Flash is soon history there too.

Do you need assistance with uninstalling Flash Player or would you like to find out more about our Compromise Assessment? We would be pleased to provide you with support.

Contact us!

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IT Security

Stefan Rothenbühler
About the author / Stefan Rothenbühler

InfoGuard AG - Stefan Rothenbühler, Principal Cyber Security Analyst

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