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Norwegian Parliament suffers printer scare

September 25, 2018

Russian interference has been alleged after several machines in the nation’s Parliament building were put out of action.

Multiple printers in the Storting, Norway’s Parliament, now carry notes saying “Not to be used – very important,” according to VG. As many as nine printers have been affected by the security scare, including those outside the offices of employees from various parties across the country’s political spectrum.

A fifty-year-old Russian man, who is reportedly employed by government authorities in Moscow, has been accused of involvement in the scandal. He was reportedly in the building as part of a seminar of the ECPRD Conference, which included a tour of the Storting.

However, none of the affected machines were on the route of the tour, with some on the other side of the building completely, leading to allegations of possible espionage.

None of the printers will be used again, and new machines will be bought to replace them.

A spokesman, Jorunn Nilsen, explained that the Parliament are “implementing preventive measures,” including “a review of printers,” whilst Marianne Andreassen, the Storting’s Director, added: “We take this incident seriously and implement preventive measures in cooperation with relevant actors, including NSM. This event also leads to a general review of routines and rules related to visits and seminars at the Storting.”

Printers are becoming an increasing target for hackers, due to their access to both confidential documents and secure networks. Discussing the incident, BDO Security Analyst Martin Ingesen described printers as “a common and interesting target for attackers,”  explaining that “the printer can be used as a bridge between one network to another. You can go through the printer to the secure network.”

The defence solicitor for the accused man stated that the alleged hacker did not wish to comment.

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