PSA: Adobe Flash is officially dead and gone
Adobe Flash diehards – this is it: the last, final, beyond-the-penultimate end. From today, Tuesday 12th January 2021, Adobe Flash is no more. Stop us if you’ve heard this one before, but this time, that doesn’t just mean blocked by browsers, or unsupported. It simply will not work, bringing to an end two decades of rich content, and more than a few security patches.
A notice on the Adobe website states unequivocally:
“Since Adobe will no longer be supporting Flash Player after 31 December 2020 and Adobe will block Flash content from running in Flash Player beginning 12 January 2021, Adobe strongly recommends all users immediately uninstall Flash Player to help protect their systems.
Some users may continue to see reminders from Adobe to uninstall Flash Player from their system. “
This is the final act in a death-by-a-thousand-cuts for Adobe Flash, which has been blocked from running in most web browsers for several years, with Google banning it from being served up in advertising on its ad platforms, and developers moving on to newer, lightweight and more secure alternatives such as HTML5.
In the previous few years, the Adobe Flash runtime had become increasingly prone to the discovery of security problems, sometimes being subjected to more than 100 patches in a single month. The combination of the weight of these patches and the launch of more advanced alternatives made Flash, which had revolutionised content at the start of the millennium, seem bloated and sluggish. However, because of its widespread use in the industry, Adobe announced that today would be its End-of-Life day, all the way back in July 2017, to give plenty of notice to users such as the BBC, which had built its original iPlayer technology around it, before migrating to HTML5.
The advice is simple. There is no reason to have the Adobe Flash runtime or Player on your device. Adobe threw a switch today, triggering a payload that has been built into the source code of the runtime for months. If you still have it installed on your machine, it’s time to let go. Uninstall, move on, and remember the good times.
If you have any further questions, there’s an FAQ on the Adobe website.