Google has banned the use of Adobe Flash content on its AdWords and DoubleClick networks that account for the bulk of the world's internet advertising.
Google confirmed that it will stop accepting adverts with Flash from 30 June and that from January 2017 any ads already in the system will no longer play. A few exceptions will be made for Flash video content, which is already auto-paused in Google's Chrome browser using a process called 'intelligent filtering'.
"To enhance the browsing experience for more people on more devices, the Google Display Network and DoubleClick Digital Marketing are now going 100 percent HTML5," the firm said.
Google advised companies to accept the move and begin planning for the shutdown to avoid being affected.
"Using HTML5 to design your ads can help you reach the widest possible audience, including Chrome users, across devices and screens," Google said.
The banning of Flash from the two biggest advertising platforms is a major step towards ridding the world of a piece of software often found at the centre of major security incidents.
However, Adobe Flash support is to continue until HTML5 development can match everything that can be achieved with the older plug-in, although Adobe will increasingly look to the community for security patches.
HD video is the main issue, and the BBC is a prime example of an organisation still in the early stages of finding an HTML5 alternative. Other organisations were using Microsoft Silverlight, which is built around ageing NPAPI plug-ins and is beginning to be blocked in major browsers.
It's not just that there are vulnerabilities, but that they are being exploited. There was a 300 percent rise in attacks on Flash during the first three months of last year.
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