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article imageMozilla blocks Flash in Firefox, calls for Adobe to kill it

By James Walker     Jul 15, 2015 in Internet
Mozilla, creators of the Firefox web browser, have announced that they are now disabling all versions of Adobe's Flash plugin by default. Flash is known to be insecure and a haven for vulnerabilities that let attackers hack computers.
Flash was once the method of choice for web programmers to code extra functionality into sites. Flash enabled games, videos, animations and those questionable cursor effects and flashing banners but today it is almost universally loathed by designers and developers.
It is now known to be filled with security holes and vulnerabilities which are actively exploited in the wild. All too often, Adobe fails to respond quickly enough to new discoveries, leaving users' computers at risk of attack. The advice is to remove Flash unless actually required.
With the advent of HTML5, Flash is now effectively obsolete anyway. HTML5 allows for all of the former functionality of Flash to be executed securely within the browser and often gives increased performance too. With more and more sites — including YouTube earlier this year — switching from Flash to native HTML5, Flash's time is nearly up.
That's certainly what Mozilla's Mark Schmidt thinks. As Engadget reports, Schmidt announced yesterday that all versions of Flash are now blocked by default in Firefox, giving users protection against the vulnerabilities of Flash by forcing them to actively enable it if they require the ageing plugin.
Schmidt added that Mozilla will unblock Flash only if Adobe updates it with a new version "which isn't being actively exploited by publicly known vulnerabilities." It's clear that the industry is getting fed up with Adobe's attitude towards maintaining the software.
The move comes just a day after Facebook's head of security Alex Stamos called on Adobe to publicly admit the failure of Flash and formally announce a date for its death. Stamos wants the company to enable "killbit" functionality that would force web browsers to automatically disable the technology on that end-of-life day.
With representatives of some of the most influential Internet developers calling on Adobe to either properly fix or finish with Flash, it looks as though the last nails are being put in the coffin of what was once the backbone of multimedia on the Internet. Those days are now long since gone though and Flash is just a sinking ship, riddled with holes.
More about Mozilla, Firefox, Flash, Plugin, Web
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