30 Nov 2011

Columbia University researchers Ang Cui and Salvatore Stolfo have discovered a vulnerability in HP LaserJet printers that could result in hackers remotely controlling it.

Hackers could then launch cyber attacks and steal information being printed.  In particular they could program the internal components to overload until a fire occurs.

However, more recently HP has released a statement, saying the information in this study is not accurate.  They argue that there is a thermal switch in all of its LaserJet printers and it cannot be remotely disabled.  They also have said that printers made since 2009 require digital signatures on updates.  HP insists that the researchers must have had an older printer, though Stolfo and Cui say it was purchased in September from a major retailer.

Despite, this, HP has conceded there is a security issue on some LaserJet printers where a firmware could be applied remotely, but only from a PC on the same network.  They also state that a bogus update forced via a print job would only work on a Linux based OS or a Mac.  HP will fix the issue, with.. irony here.. a Firmware Update.

Source:  MSNBC

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