In a move that absolutely no one saw coming, Adobe’s flailing Flash Player has partnered with FedEx to make your online printing experience a little riskier.
Users who want to print via the FedEx website will be greeted with a message prompting them to install the video plugin, which is strange, especially when you consider the fact that Adobe itself issued a statement a few years ago saying they were phasing Flash Player out.
FedEx will give users who install Flash a $5 off coupon on orders over $30. Here’s why you shouldn’t bother.
Flash helps your browser plays videos, animations and even those annoying pop-up ads. Or at least it did. Safari, Chrome and Firefox have been blocking it for a while now. Facebook and YouTube too. And that’s not even new — Apple’s been boycotting Flash since 2009 because of how vulnerable the software is.
Flash is an increasingly obsolete plug-in. It’s also one of the most exploited. Just a few years ago experts published a study detailing the most common ways hackers infiltrate your network. Guess what. Flash software was used in over 80 percent of the cases.
Hackers were able to gain access to a user’s network by exploiting vulnerabilities within the software to infest their browsers with malware. While patches and updates do exist (and do a decent job of addressing most vulnerabilities), Flash has long been replaced by the faster, safer and all-around superior HTML5 standard.
So, if you absolutely, positively need to use FedEx’s online services, we suggest deactivating Flash as soon as you’re done. Or just taking your package to a FedEx store.