Beware : Your Printer can be spammed



With Internet comes various types of cyber crime and security threats. Earlier hackers used fraud websites to gain information and propagate spam to our mail box. But things are becoming much different now. Security researcher Aaron Weaver has demonstrated that even your printer can be hijacked and spammed through the internet.

The concept is similar to that of cross side scripting where an attacker injects malicious code in the web pages that are viewed by the others. Weaver has demonstrated how at attacker can use the visitor’s printer to print spam messages. For this, the user will have to visit a web page that suffers from cross side scripting. The hacker can then send a java script code to he browser which will then guess the location of the printer and send it a print command. The hacker can then use the printer to print spam messages or sometimes even send a fax etc.

Weaver demostrated the attack successfully on Internet Explorer and Firefox. However the attack only works on network printer and not on a stand alone ones. The only way which you can defend against this attack is the set a password for your printer or make it accept print command from a specified server.

9 Comments

  1. Ashish says:

    Thats a big possibility. We make programs generally to print automatically and same thing can be done here

  2. yep they find all different ways to attack…

  3. Keith Dsouza says:

    Wow this is really worth knowing about, dunno to what lengths a hacker can go to exploit a system

  4. Brown Baron says:

    If they’re going to spam our office printer, I hope they spam us with Chuck Norris jokes hehe

  5. Mobile guy says:

    Even you cellphone can be spammed.

  6. Rakshit says:

    Ohh dear o dear….
    This is first time I came to know about this.
    Technology is growing fast and so do the security threats.

  7. Bobby Revell says:

    If I were a “printer spammer” I’d leave the following message:

    I am the Evil Printer Master…I can empty your toner cartridges at will…Muah hahaha…at $ 25.00 each, I have power over your income too….hahaha:)

  8. never Thought of printer spamming

    thanks for pointing it out

  9. DJ says:

    Me too. Never thought of that.