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  1. #1
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    Networked multifunction and viruses

    Just bought and installed a networked multifunction. It also has a convenient USB slot, for direct printing, and direct scanning. I thought I would restrict my friends access to this slot, rather than allowing them onto my network.

    Question is, can a multifunction copier/printer/scanner, which also has a hard drive, can it be used for spreading viruses?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Silver Lounger wavy's Avatar
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    https://www.schneier.com/blog/archiv...r_securit.html

    This is not a spreading of viruses but not nice. IIRC there something that could mess up a printer out there as well. With a printer smart enough for a HDD I am gonna go out on a limb and say yes. Theoretically.

    Do you have a good hardware firewall? If you have wireless is it set for WPA2-PSK (AES)?http://www.howtogeek.com/204697/wi-f...-tkip-or-both/

    And disabled wps, if possible>

    http://www.howtogeek.com/176124/wi-f...ld-disable-it/

    Set router to not be managed on the net? And changed default password?


    If all yeses I would your printer is safe w/o a keyboard/chair interface incident.
    David

    Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.

  3. #3
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    The USB port will allow you to connect USB devices, like printers and disks, to your network. It doesn't allow those devices to act like a PC and attack other network devices, but it doesn't prevent you accessing a file on a USB disk that is already infected.

    cheers, Paul

  4. #4
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    Thanks. Very helpful comments

  5. #5
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    Post script. The photocopier technician at work said that in his view, printing from USB could potentially damage the copier, and he preferred to set things so we could scan to USB but not print from USB. He also said the reliability of printing via a computer + USB port was less reliable than printing via the ADSL link, which may be something to do with his experience of his product brand, and not be a general statement. . He suggested that we should plug guest USB sticks into a computer and check them for viruses!! Ugh. I thought that was the whole point of a USB slot on the copier, so that viruses on the stick would not spread to the computer.

  6. #6
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    What a crock of...
    The manufacturer doesn't make devices that you can damage by using a USB port, but you may be able to damage the USB interface on any device if you are really clumsy with it. If the printer is unreliable when printing via USB the manufacturer has not designed/built the device properly.

    Re-reading your post I realise my answer in post #3 isn't quite right. The USB port on an MFC is for a local PC to talk to the MFC directly. There will be no interaction between the USB and the network interface that allows data to be sent over the network. What the MFC may do is send management information (SNMP) over the network, but this isn't capable of carrying PC viruses.

    cheers, Paul

  7. #7
    Silver Lounger wavy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ILowe View Post
    P He also said the reliability of printing via a computer + USB port was less reliable than printing via the ADSL link,.


    Where does ADSL even come into the picture? Are you allowing remote printing, Via internet? Or did he mean thru the switch part of ADSL 'modem'?
    And I am w/ Paul, careful where you dump that crock!

    David

    Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.

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