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I think my printer has being "virus activated"

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  • User profile image
    magicalclick

    Just to be clear, hardware virus happens, so yeah.

     

    Anyway, my printer as of yesterday going insane after I turn it off. It didn't turn off and starts to flash led all over. It is all-in-one, so it has many leds. And I unplug power and replug it. After that, my printer is unable to finish inistializing. The scanner keep having this weird sound.

     

    Ok, how to fix this? I have to unplug it for at least 5 mintnues and plug it back. It will work and my scanner is completely fine. If I ever turn it off and turn it back on? It will do those crazing sound again. The only way to fix this is to unplug it for at least 5 minutes. I presume that the internal data will be lost once I unplug it long enough.

     

    So far, I just keep it on and never turn off. Unless I unplug it without turning it off. I believe there is somekind of hardware virus embeded in my printer. I am not going to disclose the printer brand ofc. But, anyone have similar experience recently?

     

     

    Leaving WM on 5/2018 if no apps, no dedicated billboards where I drive, no Store name.
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  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Download:[Pending]

    "Just to be clear, hardware virus happens, so yeah."

     

    Not really, no; there are no "hardware viruses" because being in hardware means it can't reproduce, which is contrary to the notion of it being a virus.

     

    Besides, your printer's firmware is probably stored in ROM chips, maybe a flashable EEPROM if it supports firmware updates, but I doubt that would get corrupted.

     

    "Anyway, my printer as of yesterday going insane after I turn it off. It didn't turn off and starts to flash led all over. It is all-in-one, so it has many leds. And I unplug power and replug it. After that, my printer is unable to finish inistializing. The scanner keep having this weird sound."

     

    Modern printers retain state between power cycles. I guess it just got messed up in the head. Unplugging the power won't do anything unless it uses some kind of volatile storage, which is unlikely (you don't engineer a device to use volatile storage betweeen cycles, if you were you'd force a wipe on reboot to ensure it was clean).

     

    "Ok, how to fix this? I have to unplug it for at least 5 mintnues and plug it back. It will work and my scanner is completely fine. If I ever turn it off and turn it back on? It will do those crazing sound again. The only way to fix this is to unplug it for at least 5 minutes. I presume that the internal data will be lost once I unplug it long enough."

     

    Speak to your printer's manufacturer, file a support incident or RMA if it's still under warranty.

     

     

  • User profile image
    elmer

    Sounds like a circuit-board is on its way out - possibly a flakey capacitor.

     

    We have an old phone system here at work that's in a similar state... fine once up and running on the UPS, but can take many attempts of power-cycling to get it to initialise, and best to leave it to fully discharge all caps before trying... hopefully my ebay search will turn up a spare board before it totally dies.

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    Wow, hey the printer is having some kind of hardware failure.... that's all.

     

    by the way one time at a store i worked at we had a guy try and tell us a VGA card we sold him had a virus....

    this was back around 1996-97 when a VGA card did not even have a GPU or hardly any chips at all....

    time for tinfoil hats for that guy ..... LOL

     

    even if you could write a virus for a printer what would be the point ?

    folks who write this stuff do it so they can brag or so that they can make money.....

    jamming up one model of one brand of printer is not really a good target.

     

  • User profile image
    davewill

    elmer is on target.  the device has a bad chip, resistor, capacitor, etc and when the unit is cold it isn't as susceptible to the problem as when it is warm.

  • User profile image
    magicalclick

    figuerres said:

    Wow, hey the printer is having some kind of hardware failure.... that's all.

     

    by the way one time at a store i worked at we had a guy try and tell us a VGA card we sold him had a virus....

    this was back around 1996-97 when a VGA card did not even have a GPU or hardly any chips at all....

    time for tinfoil hats for that guy ..... LOL

     

    even if you could write a virus for a printer what would be the point ?

    folks who write this stuff do it so they can brag or so that they can make money.....

    jamming up one model of one brand of printer is not really a good target.

     

    I don't know. They guy who implented the virus "builder" inside the cellphone chip designer software was able to tapwire the "pre"-infected cellphone by initiating 5 distinctive phone numbers in sequence. Why they do that? I don't know. All I know is there is so many stages where the virus/mods can be injected in design/3rd party chip/production/testing/packaging/retailer stages. And this real case is actually comes before all of them, before the design stage. 

     

    Yupe, stuff like this really freaks me out because they already happened. I know, I am super paranoid, just like when Prius has the electical break, I said hell no.

     

    Anyway, for now, I just don't turn it off anymore. If I press off button, weird stuff happens. If I can change the time, I would so want to give it a try.

     

    Leaving WM on 5/2018 if no apps, no dedicated billboards where I drive, no Store name.
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  • User profile image
    elmer

    magicalclick said:
    figuerres said:
    *snip*

    I don't know. They guy who implented the virus "builder" inside the cellphone chip designer software was able to tapwire the "pre"-infected cellphone by initiating 5 distinctive phone numbers in sequence. Why they do that? I don't know. All I know is there is so many stages where the virus/mods can be injected in design/3rd party chip/production/testing/packaging/retailer stages. And this real case is actually comes before all of them, before the design stage. 

     

    Yupe, stuff like this really freaks me out because they already happened. I know, I am super paranoid, just like when Prius has the electical break, I said hell no.

     

    Anyway, for now, I just don't turn it off anymore. If I press off button, weird stuff happens. If I can change the time, I would so want to give it a try.

     

    Even if you could develop a firmware "virus",  flashing the firware on any piece of harware is not a trivial task, and not likley done without explicit user intervention and/or approval.

     

    Cellphones that run an O/S (and sofware in general) are obviously at risk of malware, for all the usual security reasons.

     

    What device-level software does your printer run ?

     

  • User profile image
    magicalclick

    elmer said:
    magicalclick said:
    *snip*

    Even if you could develop a firmware "virus",  flashing the firware on any piece of harware is not a trivial task, and not likley done without explicit user intervention and/or approval.

     

    Cellphones that run an O/S (and sofware in general) are obviously at risk of malware, for all the usual security reasons.

     

    What device-level software does your printer run ?

     

    Well, in the existing cellphone chip case I said earlier, there is no firmware, it is part of the circuts. The virus is injected before the design phase (imagine your VS is infected already). Only solution is to recall them. Of course, stuff like that is rare, I am just paranoid.

    Leaving WM on 5/2018 if no apps, no dedicated billboards where I drive, no Store name.
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  • User profile image
    elmer

    magicalclick said:
    elmer said:
    *snip*

    Well, in the existing cellphone chip case I said earlier, there is no firmware, it is part of the circuts. The virus is injected before the design phase (imagine your VS is infected already). Only solution is to recall them. Of course, stuff like that is rare, I am just paranoid.

    I have no idea what this is about - can you please provide a link, I'd be interested in reading more about it.

  • User profile image
    magicalclick

    elmer said:
    magicalclick said:
    *snip*

    I have no idea what this is about - can you please provide a link, I'd be interested in reading more about it.

    I don't have the link, it is a seminar. After I am home, I can try send you the info about it. The seminar is about hardware validation because at any stage of production, someone can inject virus/trogan in there. The case demonstrated in the seminar is an existing cell phone chip maker. The designer software was bad, thus, the solution generated from the desinger has malicious circuits in there. Which is activated with 5 distinctive phone number in sequence.

     

    Well, my printer is probably not that elaborate, I am just paranoid.

     

    Leaving WM on 5/2018 if no apps, no dedicated billboards where I drive, no Store name.
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  • User profile image
    figuerres

    magicalclick said:
    elmer said:
    *snip*

    I don't have the link, it is a seminar. After I am home, I can try send you the info about it. The seminar is about hardware validation because at any stage of production, someone can inject virus/trogan in there. The case demonstrated in the seminar is an existing cell phone chip maker. The designer software was bad, thus, the solution generated from the desinger has malicious circuits in there. Which is activated with 5 distinctive phone number in sequence.

     

    Well, my printer is probably not that elaborate, I am just paranoid.

     

    Well IMHO if a hardware mfg builds some element into a device then i do not think that should even be called a virus.

     

    more like a Bomb or a Backdoor or a Trojan dpeending on what it does and why they did it.

    and yeah in our "connected world" with the dependance on all maner of Tech we do need to keep an eye on stuff.

    but a in general printers are not that much of a target for Viruses.

     

    I do know there were some printers with built in FTP servers for network printing that have been "Exploited" but again that was not a virus... it was bad security and design flaws.

  • User profile image
    elmer

    magicalclick said:
    elmer said:
    *snip*

    I don't have the link, it is a seminar. After I am home, I can try send you the info about it. The seminar is about hardware validation because at any stage of production, someone can inject virus/trogan in there. The case demonstrated in the seminar is an existing cell phone chip maker. The designer software was bad, thus, the solution generated from the desinger has malicious circuits in there. Which is activated with 5 distinctive phone number in sequence.

     

    Well, my printer is probably not that elaborate, I am just paranoid.

     

    Ok, now I know what you mean, and I think I've already read the article you are referring to:

     

    http://people.csail.mit.edu/costan/readings/oakland_papers/hicks10.pdf

     

    However, there we are talking industrial (or government) espionage on rather a grand scale.

  • User profile image
    magicalclick

    elmer said:
    magicalclick said:
    *snip*

    Ok, now I know what you mean, and I think I've already read the article you are referring to:

     

    http://people.csail.mit.edu/costan/readings/oakland_papers/hicks10.pdf

     

    However, there we are talking industrial (or government) espionage on rather a grand scale.

    Yeah I know, I am just getting paranoid because I liked that printer a lot and it died on me. And my friend's printer of same brand just so happened to break not long before me. For some reason his printer like to eat paper when it starts up and eat it half way.

    Leaving WM on 5/2018 if no apps, no dedicated billboards where I drive, no Store name.
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  • User profile image
    Blue Ink

    figuerres said:
    magicalclick said:
    *snip*

    Well IMHO if a hardware mfg builds some element into a device then i do not think that should even be called a virus.

     

    more like a Bomb or a Backdoor or a Trojan dpeending on what it does and why they did it.

    and yeah in our "connected world" with the dependance on all maner of Tech we do need to keep an eye on stuff.

    but a in general printers are not that much of a target for Viruses.

     

    I do know there were some printers with built in FTP servers for network printing that have been "Exploited" but again that was not a virus... it was bad security and design flaws.

    I don't know the technical term for malicious logic embedded in silicon, but it certainly makes a good case for exploring new applications of curare-tipped barbed wire as applied to hardware designers.

     

    Not that releasing malware ridden software is to be condoned, but that - at least - is relatively easy to fix.

     

     

     

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