HP warns of printer software security threat

HP has warned that software bundled with some of its printers could allow remote hackers to steal data from users’ PCs.

HP has warned that software bundled with some of its printers could allow remote hackers to steal data from users’ PCs.

A security flaw in software which ships with two HP Color LaserJet printers can act as an entry into users’ Windows systems when it is running in default mode.

The bug is in the Toolbox software which comes with HP's Color LaserJet 2500 and 4600 printers, said HP.

Toolbox is software which is installed on a PC along with the printer drivers. It uses a web browser interface to allow users to access printer status information, troubleshooting tips and demos, as well as an alerts feature.

To address the problem, HP has issued HP Color LaserJet 2500/4600 Software Update version 3.1, which should now be immediately downloaded by users.

Security software company Secunia said the flaw is caused by an input validation error in the web server that forms part of the software.

As printers have become more integrated with web-enabled businesses, they have become more vulnerable.

A number of printers now available on the corporate market are able to search for new software updates themselves, across business networks and onto the internet, creating a hacking opportunity for remote attackers.

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