Minecraft: Java Edition Skins Issue Update
A clarification on the skin downloads issue
Yesterday, you may have read a few stories from other sites about an issue with downloaded Minecraft: Java Edition skins, with concerns that this could lead to viruses on your PC.
This is now resolved, but we wanted to explain what happened and the measures we’ve put in place to protect our community.
Any Minecraft: Java Edition player can upload their own custom skin in the widely-used PNG file format to our webservice at minecraft.net and this will then appear on their character in-game. PNG files can contain things other than an image, such as metadata, which includes information on what tool created it, when it was made, who made it, etc. This meant that PNG files could be created containing code in this inert part of the skin file. However, this code would not be run or read by the game itself.
While your antivirus software might detect this code and alert you to its presence, the code would not be able to run by itself. Additionally, even if you found the code within the file and chose to run it, your antivirus software should detect and block the attempt.
To further protect our players, however, we deployed an update that strips out all the information from uploaded skin files other than the actual image data itself.
Thank you for bearing with us and we hope this clears things up! If you encounter any other issues, please use Mojang Support