Mozilla’s move to nudge Firefox users into updating the browser’s Flash Player plug-in has been a phenomenal success with about 10 million users clicking through to the Web page with Adobe’s patch.

Mozilla released some brief statistics to track the success of its new program, which serves up a visual warning to Firefox users if their version of the ever-present Adobe Flash Player plug-in is out of date. The program started last week with the releases of Firefox 3.5.3 and Firefox 3.0.14.

Here’s a chart tracking the traffic and click-through rates on the Flash security warning page:

From Mozilla’s Ken Kovash:

Beyond the total impact of 10,000,000 clicks, the most impressive pattern that stands out is the click through rate.  While the Firefox whatsnew page generally sees a click through rate below 5%, the flash update link alone has generated a click-through rate north of 30%.  Phenomenal!

The 30% click-through number might be something to celebrate but it means that a whopping two-thirds of all Firefox users may still be running a version of Flash Player that’s vulnerable to malware attacks.

Adobe’s software — especially Flash Player and Reader/Acrobat — have become a preferred target for malware attacks because they are usually unpatched on the majority of Windows desktops. 

By Adobe’s count,  99% of all Internet-enabled PCs are currently running Flash.


Categories: Compliance, Vulnerabilities