Last updated: October 16, 2017
Java is a free software developed by Oracle Corporation, and also a programming language. When you download and install the free Java software, you are installing the Java Runtime Environment (JRE), including the Java Virtual Machine (JVM). When referring to “Java” in this article, we are referring to JRE, which is a web browser plug-in required to run Java applets in your web browser.
The very first step in resolving Java-related issues with your computer is to make sure your Java installation is current.
Strides have been made with Java 7 and Java 8 to improve vulnerability to exploits. If you see a Do you want to run this application dialog display in your web browser, it may mean that you have encountered a Java application that has a certificate from a trusted source.
Generally, if a Java application is using a signed applet with a certificate issued by a trusted Certificate Authority, it could be considered to be low risk. But before you click the Run button in the dialog, there are several items you should check first. Listed at the top of the dialog are three key pieces of information about the Java application that you have encountered. This information is listed so you can determine if you recognize and trust the application before you give it permission to run:
Name: Do you recognize and trust the name of the application listed in the dialog?
Publisher: Is the name of the publisher, who is commonly the application developer, familiar to you?
Location: Is the listed location, which is commonly a web address, one that you recognize and trust?
If you answered Yes to all of the questions above, then the application could be considered to be low risk to your system. Click Run if you trust the location and the publisher. If you do not recognize the publisher and/or the location, do not click Run — click Cancel instead.
Java applications are encountered frequently on the Internet. If the Java application you have encountered is one that you encounter frequently, you can configure Java on your computer so that the Do you want to run this application dialog never displays for it. To do so, check the Do not show this again for apps from the publisher and location above check box before you click the Run button.
The next time you encounter this Java application, the Do you want to run this application dialog will not display.
You may also see a Blue Shield display in the security dialog, with a More Information link. When the Blue Shield is present, it means the Java application can be identified using a valid certificate. Click the More Information link to see what information is available.
July 14, 2015 Upate. Adobe has released a security update for Flash Player for Windows, Mac and Linux. The update addresses a critical vulnerability in Flash Player version 18.104.22.168 and earlier. Follow the How to update Flash Player instructions to update your computer to Flash Player version 22.214.171.124. Firefox users who install the update will see Flash content display by default.
July 13, 2015 Update for Firefox users. Mozilla has blocked all versions of Adobe Flash Player from Firefox by default, including the latest version 126.96.36.199. This is due to Flash Player vulnerabilities actively being exploited in the wild. Adobe is currently working on a patch. Once the patch is released, and you have updated to the next version of Flash Player, Flash content will once again display in Firefox by default. To run Flash content in Firefox for now, just type about:addons in your Firefox address bar, click the Plugins tab, and set Shockwave Flash 188.8.131.52 to Ask to Activate.
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