Adobe releases unscheduled Flash update to patch critical zero-day threat

Adobe has released an unscheduled update for its ubiquitous Flash media player to patch a critical vulnerability that may already be under active exploit in the wild.

The security flaw exists in Adobe Flash Player and earlier versions for Windows and OS X and and earlier versions for Linux, according to an advisory published Tuesday morning. The vulnerability stems from an integer underflow bug in the underlying code that could be exploited to execute arbitrary code on the affected system. Because attackers can typically trigger such vulnerabilities surreptitiously after luring victims to websites hosting attacks, Adobe rated the threat as "critical," the company's highest severity category.

"Adobe is aware of reports that an exploit for this vulnerability exists in the wild and recommends users update their product installations to the latest versions," the Adobe advisory stated. It went on to thank Alexander Polyakov and Anton Ivanov of antivirus provider Kaspersky Labs for reporting the vulnerability, which was listed as CVE-2014-0497 under the standardized common vulnerabilities and exposure disclosure system.

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