Apple No Longer Supporting QuickTime on Windows, vulnerabilities found
While Apple insists the QuickTime plugin will still work, however it has not been properly updated to work well with Windows 8 or Windows 10.
Now is the time to dump QuickTime, at least according to the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team, an organization within the Department of Homeland Security. US-CERT, as they are otherwise known is tasked with keeping the internet safe.
US-CERT strives for a safer, stronger Internet for all Americans by responding to major incidents, analyzing threats, and exchanging critical cybersecurity information with trusted partners around the world.
Industry experts and the government are urging us to remove QuickTime from our Windows computers. This reaction is not solely because of Apple’s decision to not support the plugin for Windows. Two critical vulnerabilities have been discovered, that if QuickTime is left on your computer could leave your system open for attack. Since Apple is no longer supporting the plugin, these openings are not going to be patched.
According to Trend Micro:
…ultimately the right answer is to follow Apple’s guidance and uninstall QuickTime for Windows. That is the only sure way to be protected against all current and future vulnerabilities in the product now that Apple is no longer providing security updates for it.
US-CERT also recommends uninstalling the plugin from your Windows based computers
…using unsupported software may increase the risks from viruses and other security threats. Potential negative consequences include loss of confidentiality, integrity, or availability of data, as well as damage to system resources or business assets. The only mitigation available is to uninstall QuickTime for Windows. Users can find instructions for uninstalling QuickTime for Windows on the Apple Uninstall QuickTime
Many Windows users wonder about how they should play videos if they no longer use QuickTime. Fortunately there are many options available to us. You can still use an Apple product, iTunes, to play video and audio files. Your Microsoft computer should also have a built-in media player that will also work. Of course there are other companies who provide players as well if you are interested in a third-party solution.
The lack of support is not new. Companies often phase out support for older products. Microsoft itself no longer supports Windows XP, and is scheduled to stop supporting Vista this year and Windows 7 in 2020. Apple actually began this phase-out in 2013. In January of this year the QuickTime browser plugin for Windows was axed.
QuickTime 7, which is the latest version of the product, was introduced in 2005. It has been replaced on Mac machines since 2009. Those machines use the newer QuickTime X, which according to Trend Micro, doesn’t have the same vulnerabilities. There is no “X” version of QuickTime for Windows.
We find it interesting to note that Apple still has a link on their site allowing users to download the QuickTime plugin for Windows. Apple does not state on their site that the plugin will no longer be supported, nor do they, at the time of this writing, urge users to uninstall the plugin.