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October 1, 2010

Experts vote to abolish PDF format

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by Janet Harris

A massive ninety-seven per cent of security experts at the Virus Bulletin 2010 conference voted to abolish Adobe’s PDF standard because of security concerns.

Paul Baccus of Sophos took a straw poll of the audience during one of the sessions at the Vancouver conference, which concludes today.

Recent improvements in Microsoft’s security have caused hackers to shift their focus to Flash and PDF, generating calls for a new portable document format offering better security.

Adobe’s next security update, on 5 October, will patch a critical hole in Adobe Reader as well as the Acrobat PDF software.

The vulnerability, which was discovered three weeks ago, could allow hackers to take over compromised PCs.

Adobe Reader 9.3.4 for Windows, Macintosh and Unix, Adobe Acrobat 9.3.4 for Windows and Macintosh, and Adobe Reader 8.2.4 and Acrobat 8.2.4 for Windows and Macintosh will all be released on 5 October, a week ahead of schedule.

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2 Comments »
  1. Laughable - Sophos themselves employ the PDF format for their own secure email solution!

    Comment by Laughable… — October 1, 2010 @ 10:05 pm

  2. Is the issue against the format or the reader? If it’s the latter then quite simply make a different more secure reader the defacto standard.

    Comment by Matt — October 4, 2010 @ 10:13 am

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