UPDATE: As of January 1, 2021, Flash Player is no longer supported. & from January 12, 2021, Adobe has blocked Flash Player content from playing on computers where that software is installed. Yet you may still come across websites claiming that you need to update Flash Player, and offering to allow you to tải về it. If you see something like that, vì chưng NOT download THE SOFTWARE. Any supposed Flash Player update you see is malware. Flash Player was long used lớn serve malware, on both macOS và Windows, because of the frequent updates needed to lớn the software. But you should no longer worry about Flash Player, no matter what websites tell you.

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When updating this article, we decided to leave the remainder as is, for historical reasons. If you’re interested in understanding why Flash Player was so problematic, read on to lớn discover the saga of Flash Player.

For years, Flash Player has been a major vector for malware, và bogus Flash Player installers và updaters have served as Trojan horses lớn infect Macs và PCs. When there are vulnerabilities related to lớn Flash Player, which happens often, it’s important lớn update your Flash Player plug-in—if you already have it on your Mac và are sure that you still need it.

But you may be wondering a few things, such as what the heck is a plug-in? How vì you know if the version of Flash you have is the one that needs updating? và how can you make sure you’re as safe as possible when updating the software, given the constant flood of problems that are being reported? These are all valid concerns that we’ll clear up, putting your mind at ease when it comes time khổng lồ update Adobe Flash Player.

Note that Adobe has announced that Flash Player will no longer be supported after December 31, 2020, and, while Flash Player content will not all disappear on that date, it has already become rare. So it’s fairly unlikely that you even need to use Flash Player anymore.

The safest way to view Flash content is to lớn use Google’s Chrome browser, which has a built-in version of Flash Player, so you don’t have to lớn worry about Flash updates. As long as you quit & restart your Chrome browser daily, the browser (and its embedded Flash Player) will automatically stay up lớn date.

Related: Adobe Flash Player is dead, yet 10% of Macs are infected with nhái Flash malware

Adobe Flash Player is dead, yet 10% of Macs are infected with nhái Flash malware

But if you still want lớn use Flash Player, và want to ensure that you bởi so safely, read on.

What is a plug-in?

Let’s start with the basics. Plug-ins are software elements used by website browsers, often to lớn display certain types of content such as Flash or Java. Sometimes these come with your operating system, but sometimes you have to địa chỉ cửa hàng them when installing certain types of software. When it comes lớn plug-ins, it can be hard to lớn know what you have installed or which version you have.

Adobe’s Flash Player was long one of the most popular plug-ins, used as a multi-platform tool khổng lồ provide what is called “Active Content,” meaning it adds additional functionality khổng lồ web pages for interactive or media-related capability. While Flash Player is due lớn be discontinued this year, & other technologies, such as HTML5, are used lớn provide the same type of content, you may still need lớn use Flash Player khổng lồ view certain websites.

What’s the security concern with plug-ins?

Media designed to be viewed with Flash Player, or other platforms, can be embedded in website pages, and are accessible to users across all operating systems, which makes the software a popular attack vector for malware creators. For instance, it has been known for some time that Java is not particularly safe, but Flash has been so problematic that táo bị cắn dở stopped providing it with macOS. Steve Jobs penned a scathing xuất hiện letter about Flash back in 2010, and this, along with the rise of iOS, which can’t run Flash Player, has contributed to lớn its planned retirement.

Flash was not included on iOS, in part because of these security vulnerabilities, but also because of performance issues; Flash Player would use up the battery on an iPhone or máy tính bảng ipad too quickly. Although this has helped decrease the options malware creators have for attacking tiện ích ios devices, Flash is still used on some websites, and users are often prompted lớn update their software.

Sometimes multiple updates khổng lồ Flash Player can occur in the same month. Adobe notifies Flash users of new available updates by displaying a dialog. But when you see this type of dialog, how can you tell if the Flash update is valid or an attempt khổng lồ install malware on your Mac?

How khổng lồ verify which Flash version you have installed

The easiest way to kiểm tra which version of Flash Player you have, and whether you need lớn update it, is khổng lồ go to Adobe’s Flash Player Help website page.


You can also check in Safari by going to Safari > Preferences, then Websites. At the bottom of the left-hand column, you’ll see Plug-ins; if it is installed, Adobe Flash Player will show with its version number.


In Firefox, choose Firefox > Preferences, then click Extensions & Themes at the bottom of the sidebar. Flash Player is listed as Shockwave Flash; click this entry to see the exact version.


If you use Google Chrome, a version of Flash Player is included in the browser; you don’t have to lớn worry about updates, because Chrome updates include updates to lớn the plug-in. If you enter chrome://settings/content in Chrome’s address bar, you’ll find some Flash settings.

For other browsers, see Adobe’s Flash Player Help page.

How to lớn know when you need khổng lồ update Flash Player

First of all, if your browser has its own embedded Flash Player, then by updating your browser you’ll also update to the latest version of Flash Player. Google Chrome is the most popular browser that contains an embedded Flash Player, và it’s available for Mac, Windows, và Linux. Microsoft Edge also contains an embedded Flash Player, and it’s available for Mac và Windows; a Linux version is coming later in 2020. Cảnh báo that for both of these browsers, Flash is actually disabled by default, & you can only enable it temporarily, so you’ll need khổng lồ toggle a setting before you can use Flash content (see Google’s instructions for Chrome, or Microsoft’s instructions for Edge).

But if you’re using another browser that doesn’t have an embedded copy of Flash, & still supports plug-ins, you’ll need lớn update your Flash Player manually—and with caution—as detailed below.

As mentioned earlier, fake Flash Player updates have been used to install malware on both Macs and PCs. The best known example of a kém chất lượng Flash update is the Flashback Trojan horse, which first masqueraded as a Flash Player installer package targeting Mac users. Over 600,000 Mac users installed the nhái update khổng lồ Adobe Flash thinking it was valid, thereby infecting their machines with malware.

And while Flashback was rampant nine years ago, a lot of recent malware has also attempted lớn masquerade as Flash Player installers, including many Shlayer variants.

It’s a very common trick lớn display dialogs that look like Flash Player update notifications, to trick people into downloading Trojan horses. If you see one of these, saying that your software is outdated & that you need to tải về and install a new version, you can check with Adobe khổng lồ verify if an update is necessary. Go khổng lồ Adobe’s Flash Player Help page, as mentioned above. If an update is available, it will tell you.

You can also check in System Preferences. Flash Player installs a preference pane; click it lớn see settings for the plug-in. If you click the Updates tab, you’ll see which version you have installed, & you can click check Now to kiểm tra for updates.


You may want to check Allow Adobe khổng lồ install updates, which is more secure, but you run the risk of a problematic update being installed on your Mac. While it’s better sometimes to lớn wait lớn ensure that updates are stable, with Flash Player it’s probably a good idea khổng lồ get updates automatically, so you get them as soon as possible.

How to lớn uninstall Flash Player

With all these worries about Flash Player, you might not want to lớn bother with it. If you want lớn uninstall Flash Player, go to lớn Adobe’s Uninstall Flash Player page for Mac or Windows. Download the uninstaller for your operating system, and run the uninstaller app. Most modern Macs will require the Flash uninstaller for macOS version 10.6 and later (direct tải về link), but Adobe also makes an uninstaller available for Mac OS X 10.4 & 10.5 (direct download link). There’s a single uninstaller for Windows (direct tải về link).


Why you should be careful with Flash Player updates

Malware authors will frequently employ tricky tactics to lớn make malware look lượt thích something you should trust, so it’s important lớn get your updates only directly from the vendor that publishes them. You can head over to lớn Adobe’s site for Flash Player updates, or, as mentioned above, update Flash Player through System Preferences. But in no case should you download a Flash Player updater from any other website.

It’s a good idea to lớn always doubt the validity of automatic software update dialogs, especially those for Adobe Flash Player. When visiting a web page, if you are asked lớn install a program or plug-in on your computer, be very careful. There are legitimate reasons to bởi vì this, but in many cases these installations can be malicious. If you vày want khổng lồ install Flash Player, or any other plug-in, don’t tải về it from a random web page, and especially kiểm tra your Downloads thư mục to see if an installer or disk image was downloaded automatically. (If you find any, delete them.)

With the number of security issues that have been associated with Flash Player, it is essential lớn keep this software up lớn date, as you should bởi vì with all your software. If you follow the instructions above, và only get your Flash Player updates for Adobe or have them installed via System Preferences, you’ll never again have to second guess the validity of a random Flash installer dialog.

How can I learn more?

Each week on the khansar.net Mac Podcast, khansar.net’s Mac security experts discuss the latest táo bị cắn news, security and privacy stories, và offer practical advice on getting the most out of your táo bị cắn devices. Be sure to follow the podcast to make sure you don’t miss any episodes.

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We discussed the history of Flash Player & more in episode 168 of the khansar.net Mac Podcast.

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