Apr 21, 2009 - "... In 2008, from Jan. 1 through April 16, F-Secure saw PDFs used in 128 dangerous drive-by attacks. This year, during the same time frame, the company has seen 2,305 drive-by's using PDFs
. Such attacks go after a vulnerable Reader browser plugin... Poisoned PDFs are also often used as part of a customized, targeted attack, he says, when they're sent to a specifically selected recipient attached to a well-crafted e-mail. Hypponen didn't recommend any particular alternative program, but suggested heading to http://www.pdfreaders.org
for a list of free apps. He did point out that at the time of IE 6's security infamy, many switched over to using Firefox. And as that browser gained significant market share, it also drew the hacker's eye..."
Another freeware alternative: Foxit PDF Reader