Adobe Flash, the much-loathed, bug-plagued relic of a browser plugin, just got a big nail driven into its coffin.
Mozilla blocked Flash by default in its Firefox browser late Monday night, a day after Facebook’s security chief called for Adobe to kill Flash once and for all.
The Flash-bashing picked up last week after revelations that the spyware giant known as the Hacking Team had been using Flash to remotely take over people’s computers and infect them with malware. (That discovery took place after the hacking team hacked. Documents revealed in the breach showed that the Hacking Team exploited two critical vulnerabilities in Flash’s code.)
“It is time for Adobe to announce the end-of-life date for Flash,” tweeted Facebook security chief Alex Stamos on Sunday.
Mozilla’s support chief Mark Schmidt quickly followed suit by tweeting that all versions of Flash had been turned off in Firefox. That means Firefox users will not be able to turn on the plug-in to access Flash content — they’ll have to seek out another browser if they need to use Flash.
Adobe did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The good news for Firefox users is that most won’t notice a change. Just under 11% of websites use Flash, according to W3techs, a technology survey company.
Flash is a type of software called “middleware,” an add-on extension to the browser that allows rich content to be viewed. It had been widely used a decade ago, powering most of the Web’s games, animations and videos. When YouTube launched in 2005, its videos were entirely Flash-based, requiring its audience to install the Flash plug-in software in order to watch YouTube media.