Did you know that some photocopiers are vulnerable to hackers? Cunning hackers and crackers are using the power of Google to snoop on what people are photocopying. The good news is that this little unintended loophole only works on photocopiers that are connected to a network, and even then works only if the network is poorly configured.
Hackers and crackers are making use of specially formatted requests, known as “Google dorks in the online security community, to discover cached information on networks, including information such as the login details for network-connected photocopiers.
Google indexes URLs and information indiscriminately, without regard for whether that information could be login details, server IP addresses, or sensitive device information. If you store log files or other sensitive information on a server that is accessible to the world wide web, then Google will index it and it may be discoverable with some simple search phrases.
Exploiting photocopiers is just one of the things that can be done via Google searches. The reason that this particular exploit is such a cause for concern, however is that documents which are being photocopied are often incredibly sensitive. The reason they are being processed on paper is because they are for internal viewing only, and not things that the company wants to process electronically.
The best way to protect yourself from this kind of issue is to make sure that your network is configured correctly. Do not share any folders that you do not want to be accessed over the web. Lock down your log files and put sensitive servers behind a firewall. In addition, considering keeping your photocopiers off-network. The only way to stop a hacker from accessing a device for definite is to isolate that device from external networks completely.