Linked by Howard Fosdick on Sat 31st Dec 2011 07:57 UTC
Bugs & Viruses Columbia University researchers claim millions of HP printers could be open to remote attack via unsecured Remote Firmware Updates. Cybercriminals could steal personal information or attack otherwise secure networks. HP agrees there is a theoretical security problem but says no customer has ever reported unauthorized printer access. The company denies some of the claims and is still investigating others.
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Surprised ?
by Lennie on Sat 31st Dec 2011 09:35 UTC
Lennie
Member since:
2007-09-22

The questionmark in the article title make it seem Howard was surprised.

A printer is a network connected computer like many other devices and people don't update their firmware. So what else do you expect ?

Here some presentations on other security problems with printers:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GZgLX60U3sY#t=3m40s
( ShmooCon 2011: Printers Gone Wild! )

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MPhisPLwm2A
( ShmooCon 2011: Printer to PWND: Leveraging Multifunction Printers During Penetration Testing )

An other example is that many of these devices have a webinterface. Why is that a problem ? Well it is just as much a problem as a webinterface on your router.

A website on the Internet could include an image with a URL pointing at your router or printer which tries to change settings on that device. It is very common.

Many routers on sale right now have already fixed their problems. It will take years before printers will get fixed.

Reply Score: 7

RE: Surprised ?
by ssokolow on Sat 31st Dec 2011 15:37 in reply to "Surprised ?"
ssokolow Member since:
2010-01-21

A website on the Internet could include an image with a URL pointing at your router or printer which tries to change settings on that device. It is very common.

Many routers on sale right now have already fixed their problems. It will take years before printers will get fixed.</span>


This is why I always help people to install NoScript, even if I put the Javascript whitelisting in "globally allow" mode.

It's got another component named ABE (Application Boundaries Enforcer) which includes a default ruleset to prevent just that sort of thing. (Disallowing access to LAN URLs from a WAN document)

(You can also choose to have the XSS filters, clickjacking protection, and securely-implemented Flash/Java/etc. click-to-play active with "globally allow" chosen)

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Surprised ?
by Lennie on Sat 31st Dec 2011 16:09 in reply to "RE: Surprised ?"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

Actually, you can't do that with JavaScript. As I mentioned the attacker just places an <img>-tag.

Well, I guess you can do that with JavaScript but it doesn't have any advantage over using an image.

They might use JavaScript to generate a long list of <img>-tags to try different IP-addresses though.

Just sending a longer HTML-page is easy too ofcourse.

So the only thing you are protecting yourself against in this case is an attacker which expects JavaScript to be available and working.

Reply Parent Score: 4