Fabber viruses

Paul Raven @ 07-04-2010

Among the obligatory swathe of spoof posts for 1st April this year was one from 3D printing outfit Shapeways, who claimed to have fallen victim to the first proof-of-concept virus for fabricators[via Fabbaloo].

The best spoofs always have an element of truth, or at least truthiness. While Shapeways have fabricated this particular incident (arf!), its believability hinges on the fact that 3D printing is a networked technology, and that everything can and will be hacked.

Sven Johnson has already sent back reports from an imperfect future regarding 3D spam, which is likely to be as ubiquitous as it is for email and fax machines (which some people really do still use, apparently), but is there any scope for piggybacking illegal or exploitative content on legitimate 3D design files (like some form of steganography)? I don’t know enough about viruses or 3D design software to be certain, but my guess would be that if someone can think of a way to make a fast buck from it, it’s going to happen eventually.

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