New submitter rcoxdav writes "Researchers have found that the upgradeable firmware on some laser printers can be easily updated and compromised. The updated firmware could then be used to do anything from overheating the printer to compromising a network. Quoting: 'In one demonstration of an attack based on the flaw, Stolfo and fellow researcher Ang Cui showed how a hijacked computer could be given instructions that would continuously heat up the printer’s fuser – which is designed to dry the ink once it’s applied to paper – eventually causing the paper to turn brown and smoke. In that demonstration, a thermal switch shut the printer down – basically, causing it to self-destruct – before a fire started, but the researchers believe other printers might be used as fire starters, giving computer hackers a dangerous new tool that could allow simple computer code to wreak real-world havoc.'"
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