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How to prevent Adobe hacks from affecting your organisation

Why have Adobe hacks become more popular lately? Are there any special measures I should take to protect against them?

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Inevitably, as Microsoft improved its update process for Windows and other products, hackers have turned to other ways of infecting users' machines.

The widespread use of Adobe's products (PDF and Flash) has made them a natural target for attacks. Although Adobe has improved its update processes, the Adobe Updater program requires administrator rights to install updates. That means Adobe software is often out of date, even on corporate computers, making those computers vulnerable to attacks when processing malicious files. Other reasons include the popularity of Adobe files on various types of file-sharing sites and the apparent recent ease in finding flaws within Adobe readers. Over the years, as Adobe files include more functionality, such as JavaScript, more vulnerabilities are created.

The measures needed to protect against Adobe attacks are the same as you would take to protect against other malware. In other words, use a frequently patched operating system, running credentials without administrator rights, and use a recognised and current antivirus and antimalware system.

Also keep an eye out for any security news about Adobe software or add-ons, and ensure you keep it up to date. Run the Adobe Updater program, which requires administrator rights to install updates.

As a rule, take extra care when opening Adobe files if the source of the file is untrusted.

 

This was first published in February 2010

 

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