Malware Forces Unwanted Printing

Monday, June 25, 2012 @ 10:06 AM gHale


New malware is raging through enterprises causing their printers to print gibberish until they run out of paper, Symantec researchers said.

“The impact is global and effecting approximately 80 print servers,” an admin of one Fortune 500 company wrote in an online forum. “The print job names were all 15 characters in length and unique. The print jobs were all garbage print, as if it was opening the .exe and printing the garbage text.”

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Other participants reported the same phenomenon caused hundreds of their organizations’ printers to run through reams of paper.

Researchers from Symantec said the nuisance is coming from Trojan.Milicenso. The worst hit regions are the U.S., India, Europe, and South America.

Milicenso is a fairly sophisticated backdoor that serves as a for-hire delivery vehicle for other pieces of malware.

One of its malicious payloads, known as Adware.Eorezo, is dropping an executable file in printer spooler directories, causing some applications to print representations of the binary code.

“This explains the reports of unwanted printouts observed in some compromised environments,” Symantec researchers said. “Based on what we have discovered so far, the garbled printouts appear to be a side effect of the infection vector rather than an intentional goal of the author.”



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