Constant updating of the software we all use with the latest security patches and updates is a critical part of avoiding scams and identity theft threats. Whenever new security updates and patches are issued, we provide access to these so that you can update your software to provide better security on your computers, smartphones, laptops and other electronic devices. Updating your software with the latest security patches and updates as soon as possible is important because identity thieves and scammers are always finding and exploiting vulnerabilities in the software that we all use. Delay in updating your software could lead to disastrous results. However, it is also important to be sure that you are downloading legitimate patches and updates rather than being tricked by an identity thief or scammer into downloading malware under the guise of downloading a security patch or update. These new updates from the Department of Homeland Security include critical new updates to Adobe Flash. I have been warning you for years about flaws in Adobe Flash that have been exploited by hackers and identity thieves against individuals, companies and government agencies including the U.S. State Department and the White House. Problems with Adobe Flash are nothing new. In 2010 Steve Jobs vociferously complained about its security and it has routinely been cited as being extremely vulnerable. Despite security patch after security patch, new problems keep coming up. It appears that just as companies retire certain programs when it is just too difficult to patch them, this may well be the time for Adobe to retire Flash and if it doesn’t, you should consider retiring it yourself and replacing it with another plugin that performs the same function, but is safer.
Here are the links to lists of all of the recent security updates as posted by the Department of Homeland Security: https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/bulletins/SB16-172 and https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/bulletins/SB16-186
Some alternative plugins you may wish to consider to replace Adobe Flash include GNU Gnash, and Silverlight. Silverlight can be downloaded free directly from the Microsoft at this link: https://www.microsoft.com/silverlight/ while GNU Gnash can be downloaded free at this link: http://www.gnu.org/software/gnash/