Latest incident reinforces need to secure campus printers

UC Davis Police report that a hate message appeared in several campus printers Monday night. The incident re-emphasizes the importance of securing printers against unwanted traffic from the Internet.

In March, an outside source sent hateful messages to UC Davis and other universities via unsecured printers. The campus is investigating the source of the current message.

Following the incident in March, the UC Davis Information Security Office informed the campus that UC Davis will not allow campus printers open to the Internet to have access to the campus network, unless the printer is protected by a strong firewall, or has obtained an exception to this rule from the Information Security Office. This message to the Technology Support Program listserv has details.

Following this new incident, Information and Educational Technology immediately began scanning for on-campus printers that are exposed to the Internet, and will deactivate the campus network connection (NAM) for any such printer that it finds. As it has since April, IET will continue to conduct these scans weekly, to deter the emergence of additional, inadequately protected printers. 

Since spring, the scans have identified about 300 printers that have since been remediated.

Printer administrators should take steps immediately to ensure that their printers are secure. If they have questions or concerns, they should contact the Information Security Office at