Critical security vulnerability discovered in Macromedia Flash Player

November 10, 2005 Sophos Press Release

Macromedia has described the vulnerability as critical
Macromedia has described the vulnerability as critical.

A critical security vulnerability has been discovered in the Macromedia Flash Player commonly used to enhance multimedia content on the internet. The security hole could allow malicious hackers to run unauthorised code which might allow them to break into innocent users' computers or launch a worm.

The Macromedia Flash Player is commonly found on Windows computers, and is redistributed with Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 1 and 2, Windows 98, Windows 98 SE, and Windows Millennium Edition.

According to a security advisory published by Macromedia, Flash Player 7.0.19.0 and earlier are vulnerable to the security hole, and it is recommended that users upgrade to Flash Player 8 if possible.

"Hackers look for vulnerabilities in commonly used software, and write malware to exploit them. This helps them break into innocent people's computers to spy, steal and launch spam attacks," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos. "At the moment we have not seen any malware which exploits this particular vulnerability, but experience has shown that attack can happen very quickly after a security hole is identified. It's critical that businesses and home users protect themselves as a matter of priority."

Sophos continues to recommend companies protect their desktops and servers with automatically updated anti-virus protection.