I just got the following popup:

enter image description here

Is this a legitimate update from Adobe?

The reason I'm concerned:

  • The Flashback virus started off as a fake Adobe Flash update.
  • The UI on the application does not look like it is using native components. It seems like it's running Java or something similar.
  • I didn't run anything to prompt this. It just popped up on its own.

Other notes:

  • This is an actual application (it appears in the dock).
  • The application has no about menu.
  • I do have Adobe Reader installed, but it wasn't running at the time. (In fact, I haven't launched it in a while.)
  • There is nothing related to Adobe Reader (or the updater) in my login items (System Prefs > Users > Login Items).
  • The process name shows up as Adobe Reader Updater in Activity Monitor.
  • The Details link goes to http://www.adobe.com/go/update_details which redirects to http://helpx.adobe.com/acrobat/release-note/release-notes-acrobat-reader.html (However, that doesn't say much. Malware could just as easily link to the official website in order to appear legitimate.)
  • 4
    You can always manually install the newest version of Adobe Reader from here: get.adobe.com/reader, this way you'll be sure that is a legitimate version. This said, seems like 10.1.3 was released 6 days ago, but I can't tell if this is a legitimate popup
    – lupincho
    Apr 16, 2012 at 4:36
  • The real irony here to me is that the only Adobe Software Updater that I've ever seen is DEFINITELY not using "native components". Yes, it is a Windows screenshot, but I guess that's the only place I've ever had to install Adobe products :). Apr 16, 2012 at 5:02
  • 2
    I don't know whether this is legitimate, but if there is software on your system that could put up that dialog maliciously then you've already lost because it's already running — which button you click makes no difference. The only exception is situations like web browsers where the dialog is put up on behalf of a third party which does not yet have access, and then it nearly always will have wording like “Are you sure you want to install/enable/grant/whatever this?” rather than words like this case.
    – Kevin Reid
    Apr 18, 2012 at 22:57

2 Answers 2


It seems like it is legitimate for the following reasons:

  • When I launch Adobe Reader, it automatically updates the UI of the application to tell me that Adobe Reader needs to be closed in order for me to install this update.
  • My current version really is one below the one it's asking me to update to (10.1.2).
  • Under Adobe Reader's Update preferences, I had it checked to automatically download and prompt me to install updates.
  • Adobe's website shows that 10.1.3 really is the latest version.
  • When I run Help > Check for Updates, the same Adobe Reader Updater application is launched (or rather focused).

This does not seem to be a legitimate update- I had gotten the same exact pop up. Even after I went to the official site and downloaded the latest version, that window continued to bug me about updating- it reminded me the same day despite the update. I would not trust it.

  • Hi, welcome to Ask Different! Did you get the exact same pop up from 4 years ago? Please add a screenshot if you see it again. Thanks. Nov 22, 2016 at 2:49

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