HP LaserJet cannot be set on fire- clarifies the company
HP, the largest technology company in the world, is shocked with a recent research which claimed that its LaserJet printers had few security vulnerabilities. Columbian researchers pointed out that the HP printers could be fully controlled by the hackers and had the tendency to catch fire when attacked. But HP has slammed the accusation claiming that no such incident has been reported by any of its customers.
Professor Salvatore Stolfo and Ang Cui (Both researchers from Columbia University) claimed that they discovered the flaw in HP printers after they examined the HP printer driver. They also said that this flaw is not only with HP printers, it can be so with other printers too. They clarified that it was just a coincidence that the research was done using the HP printers. In their research, they found that a hacker can easily attack by reprogramming the printer firmware since HP printers check only for the firmware update before printing. At this point, the hacker can remotely heat up the printer, which can set the device on fire.
But HP has strongly slammed the idea that its printers can be set on fire. Here is the official statement released by the company:-
"Today there has been sensational and inaccurate reporting regarding potential security vulnerability with some HP LaserJet printers. No customer has reported unauthorized access. Speculation regarding potential for devices to catch fire due to a firmware change is false."
Researchers have also claimed that HP printers that were made back in 2009 have no security measures included. According to them, it gives a lot of room to the hackers to exploit such printers. But Chief Technologist of the HP Printer Division, Keith Moore, said that the company has updated all the old printers with digital signing in to prevent any such attack from hackers.
HP also claims that a special hardware called ‘thermal breaker’ which is installed in all of its LaserJet printers prevents them from overheating or catching the fire. It has nothing to do with the printer firmware. HP acknowledged that its printers could be affected if it is placed on the public Internet without installing the firewall. However, no complaint from HP customers has been registered about any unauthorized access to their printers.