Flash Player Updates & Microsoft Security Updates


Due to recent security vulnerabilities in Flash Player, Adobe has released version ( for Linux) this week for all platforms. All operating systems on the now out-of-date versions are vulnerable and recommended to update to the latest version. Additionally because of the severity of these vulnerabilities, Apple has blocked all out-of-date Flash Player plug-ins for OS X.

From Apple: “Due to security issues in older versions, Apple has updated the web plug-in blocking mechanism to disable all versions prior to Flash Player and”

Install or check your version of Flash Player in your browser here.

For assistance, contact the Help Desk at 617.253.1101 or helpdesk@mit.edu. You can also submit a request online.


Last week on Patch Tuesday, July 8th, Microsoft released six updates to address 29 security vulnerabilities.

Systems affected:

  • Internet Explorer (all supported versions)
  • Microsoft Windows (all supported versions)

There was also updated firmware for all Microsoft Surface tablets, labeled “System Firmware Update – 7/8/2014,” available via Windows Update, improving various hardware issues.

Read the story in the news.

Oracle and Adobe’s First Critical Patches of 2014

Adobe-LogoOracle and Adobe will release critical patches along side Microsoft on Patch Tuesday. Expected updates:

Adobe Releases Security Updates for Flash, ColdFusion

Adobe-LogoAdobe has released security updates for Flash Player and ColdFusion to address four vulnerabilities. The Flash update is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. According to Adobe, the updates are not related to the recent theft of ColdFusion source code.

Read the full article online.

Adobe Network Attacked

Adobe-LogoAdobe’s security team recently discovered sophisticated attacks on their network, involving the illegal access of information for approximately 2.9 million Adobe customers, as well as source code for numerous Adobe products. Adobe believes attacks may be related. They are working diligently, both internally and with partners and law enforcement, to address the incident.


Adobe recommends these steps:

  • Reset your Adobe ID and password.
  • Protect yourself against phishing.

IS&T recommends using the same vigilance as always for safe computing. If you are taking proactive steps to secure your computer, including applying patches immediately after release, and using virus protection software, there is a good chance of avoiding any issues.

Read the full Adobe security alert.

An MIT colleague mentioned to me that the Adobe security alert was also emailed out to Adobe customers. If you did receive one, you might be tempted to ignore it, or assume it is a scam.

As with all emails that might seem fake, be sure to verify that the email came from an Adobe email address and that any links embedded in the message truly link to an adobe.com web page. Other things to look for in “phishy” emails.

Why Patch a Mac?

Apple-LogoAccording to ZD Net, this has been a fairly busy security update season for Mac users. In fact, they say, Mac users have a lot more work involved to keep their systems safe.

There have been patches for the operating systems, for Safari for Mac, for Java and Adobe vulnerabilities, quite a long list compared to previous years.

There really are attacks out there against Macs which exploit vulnerabilities, so accepting and installing these patches is important.

Read the story online.

Adobe Updates Various Plug-Ins

Adobe has released updates to address multiple vulnerabilities in both Windows and Mac platforms.

Systems affected:

  • Adobe Flash Player 11.5 and earlier
  • Adobe AIR 3.5 and earlier
  • Adobe Shockwave Player 11.6 and earlier

Adobe recommends that users of these products apply the updates. A remote unauthenticated attacker could execute arbitrary code, cause a denial of service, or gain unauthorized access to your files or system.

To verify the version of Adobe Flash Player installed on your system, access the About Flash Player page. Do this for each browser you use. Google Chrome automatically updates when new versions of Flash Player are available.

See the full security bulletins regarding Adobe Flash Player and Adobe Shockwave Player for more details and how to update to the newest versions.

Adobe Updates Flash and Cold Fusion

Adobe has released updates for Flash and AIR which include high priority fixes for Flash Player on Windows. The vulnerabilities are being actively exploited in the wild. Three vulnerabilities are addressed including a buffer overflow, an integer overflow and a memory corruption problem, all of which can, Adobe says, lead to code execution. Adobe also released a security hotfix for ColdFusion 10, not currently being exploited in the wild. The fix is available for Windows, Mac OS X and UNIX.

Learn more in the news.

Unpatched Vulnerabilities in Java Plug-In and Adobe Certificate

An unpatched vulnerability has been spotted in all versions of Java. A security researcher from Security Explorations announced the bug discovery last Tuesday. He claims the impact of the issue is critical and was able to successfully exploit it. An attacker could use the exploit to run arbitrary code and remotely compromise a vulnerable system. If you have a Java plug-in for your browser, you are vulnerable. See these steps on how to unplug Java from a browser. Note that you may not be able to view websites properly with JavaScript disabled.

In other news, Adobe says it will revoke a code signing certificate after discovering malware that was digitally signed by the certificate. Adobe is currently investigating what appears to be inappropriate use of an Adobe code signing certificate for Windows. A Microsoft spokeswoman stated: “Microsoft will take the appropriate action to help protect its customers,” and said people should contact Adobe for more information. According to Adobe, the vast majority of Adobe software for Windows will not be affected. The revocation of the certificate affects the Windows platform and three Adobe AIR applications that run on both Windows and Macintosh. More information on the impact, and what to do, can be found on the Adobe support page.

Adobe Updates for Multiple Vulnerabilities


Here is some more information on the vulnerability in Photoshop. If a user opens a malicious GIF file with Photoshop CS 5.1 or earlier, the application could crash and an attacker could take control of the affected system.

The update for Adobe Photoshop CS 5.1 and earlier is unusual in that you can not install it through the “check for updates” tool in Photoshop, nor is it accessible through the Adobe Application Manager, which is how other updates for the Adobe products are installed.

To obtain the standard multiplugin update for Adobe Photoshop CS 5.1 and earlier, click on the appropriate link below for your system:

Photoshop CS5/CS5.1 for Windows

Photoshop CS5/CS5.1 for Windows (Win64)

Photoshop CS5/CS5.1 Macintosh

Be sure to follow the installation instructions on the downloads page.



There are multiple vulnerabilities found in various Adobe products. This month Adobe released updates to address these vulnerabilities.

Systems affected:

  • Shockwave Player 11.6 and earlier
  • Flash Media Server 4 and earlier
  • Adobe Flash Player 10.3 and earlier
  • Adobe AIR 2.7 and earlier
  • Adobe Photoshop CS5.1 and earlier
  • RoboHelp 9 and earlier

Users of these Adobe products should review the relevant security bulletins and follow the recommended solutions, which in most cases involves installing the newest update. An attacker may use these vulnerabilities to run malicious code (malware) or cause a denial of service on an affected system.

Click the links below to access the security bulletins for the affected systems:

Adobe Shockwave Player

Adobe Flash Media Server

Adobe Flash Player and AIR

Adobe Photoshop CS5



Adobe Flash Player, Reader and Acrobat Vulnerabilities

Flash Player 10.2
A critical vulnerability exists in Flash Player and earlier versions for Windows, Macintosh, Linux and Solaris; Flash Player and earlier for Android; and Adobe Flash Player and earlier for Chrome users.

Adobe recommends users of Flash Player to update to version (or Flash Player for Chrome users), now available. Android users will have to wait until the week of April 25th for the update to version Users of Adobe AIR should update to Adobe AIR 2.6.19140.

Read the security bulletin on Flash Player.

Download the latest Flash Player.

Reader 9 and 10
A critical vulnerability exists in the Authplay.dll component of Adobe Reader for Windows and Macintosh operating systems.

An update will be made available to Reader 9.4.3 and earlier for Windows and Macintosh and Reader X (10.0.1) for Macintosh the week of April 25th. Because Protected Mode would prevent an exploit in Adobe Reader X for Windows, Adobe will address this issue in the next quarterly security update scheduled for June 14, 2011.

Acrobat X
A critical vulnerability exists in the Authplay.dll component of Acrobat X (10.0.2) and earlier for Windows and Macintosh operating systems.

An update will be made available to Adobe Acrobat X (10.0.2) and earlier 10.x and 9.x versions for Windows and Macintosh the week of April 25th.

Read the full bulletin from Adobe on all vulnerabilities.


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