Feeds

HP sneaks out printer firebomb firmware security fix

Says no one has blown up any LaserJets

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

HP has quietly patched a serious security vulnerability that had left its LaserJet printers open to attack by net villains.

The security bug, first discovered by researchers at Columbia University, created a means for miscreants to install malware on vulnerable devices simply by uploading new firmware to them over a network or tricking users into printing a specially constructed document that installs a malicious firmware update.

The flaw, which stemmed from a failure to ensure firmware updates are digitally signed, could allow hackers to extract files previously printed or scanned by compromised devices, or launch attacks from hacked gear against more sensitive machines from within a corporate network.

Some reports at the time speculated that the same vulnerability could even be used to turn compromised printers into firebombs, although built-in thermal controls are not affected by firmware updates (malicious of otherwise) and ought to prevent this.

HP quietly snuck out a fix for affected printers on 23 December, two days before Christmas, as part of a low-key update. A list of affected devices can be found on HP's website here.

Researchers at Columbia University demonstrated the flaw at the Chaos Computing Congress (28c3) hacker conference in Berlin late last month - a YouTube video is here. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
One HUNDRED FAMOUS LADIES exposed NUDE online
Celebrity women victimised as Apple iCloud accounts reportedly popped
Rubbish WPS config sees WiFi router keys popped in seconds
Another day, another way in to your home router
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Researchers camouflage haxxor traps with fake application traffic
Honeypots sweetened to resemble actual workloads, complete with 'secure' logins
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
New Snowden leak: How NSA shared 850-billion-plus metadata records
'Federated search' spaffed info all over Five Eyes chums
Three quarters of South Korea popped in online gaming raids
Records used to plunder game items, sold off to low lifes
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.