Adobe said a critical vulnerability has been found in certain versions of its Flash Player that could allow an attacker to take control of the affected system.

There are reports that this vulnerability is being exploited in the wild in targeted attacks via a Flash (.swf) file embedded in a Microsoft Word (.doc) file delivered as an email attachment, targeting the Windows platform, Adobe said in a security advisory.  

At this time, Adobe is not aware of any attacks via PDF targeting Adobe Reader and Acrobat. Adobe Reader X Protected Mode mitigations would prevent an exploit of this kind from executing, Adobe said.

Following are the affected software versions:

* Adobe Flash Player 10.2.153.1 and earlier versions for Windows, Macintosh, Linux and Solaris operating systems

* Adobe Flash Player 10.2.154.25 and earlier for Chrome users

* Adobe Flash Player 10.2.156.12 and earlier for Android

* The Authplay.dll component that ships with Adobe Reader and Acrobat X (10.0.2) and earlier 10.x and 9.x versions for Windows and Macintosh operating systems

Adobe said it is in the process of finalizing a schedule for delivering updates for Flash Player 10.2.x and earlier versions for Windows, Macintosh, Linux, Solaris and Android.

It is also working on delivering updates for Adobe Acrobat X (10.0.2) and earlier 10.x and 9.x versions for Windows and Macintosh, Adobe Reader X (10.0.2) for Macintosh, and Adobe Reader 9.4.3 and earlier 9.x versions for Windows and Macintosh.

Because Adobe Reader X Protected Mode would prevent an exploit of this kind from executing, we are currently planning to address this issue in Adobe Reader X for Windows with the next quarterly security update for Adobe Reader, currently scheduled for June 14, 2011, the blog post said.

However, Adobe Reader 9.x for UNIX, Adobe Reader for Android, and Adobe Reader and Acrobat 8.x are not affected by this issue.