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Cybersecurity Concerns With 3D Printing – DZone News

by • August 14, 2016 • No Comments

Security fears are a common bedfellow of most technologies, whether it’s the Internet of Things or driverless cars. A field which hasn’t, thus far, had the same level of fear attached to it is 3D printing, but a not long ago published paper highlights a few of the cybersecurity issues surrounding the innovation.
The researchers announced cybersecurity issues in two core parts of 3D printing: the insertion of satisfactory defects and the orientation of the printing.
“These are possible foci for attacks which may have a devastating impact on users of the end product, and economic impact in the form of recalls and lawsuits,” they say.
Securing 3D printing
The orientation of the printing device is crucial to the durablity of the eventual product, with estimates which an optimal orientation can increase durablity by around 25%.
The way the printing device should be orientated is not typically included in the CAD files sent to the printing device, yet, hence it represents an opportunity for nefarious people to manipulate the system. Whilst you may wonder why you may do this, the researchers highlight the clear financial incentives to do so.
“Minus a clear directive of the create team, the most orientation for the printing device is one which minimizes the use of material and maximizes the number of parts you can print in one operation,” they say.
As 3D printing becomes an increasingly prevalent part of the donate chain, it’s crucial which companies are aware of the risks involved. This is especially so as production environments become decentralized and frequently cloud-based.
For instance, a hacker can break into a cloud-based printing device and ensure which defects are added to any component being printed. It is a risk which needs to be mitigated, especially for significant components in areas such as aviation.
This is especially significant as these micro-defects are frequently at the sub-millimeter scale and so are amazingly complex to detect via existing industrial monitoring techniques.
It is not clear only how sizeable a risk this quite poses, but with the growth in 3D printing set to accelerate, it’s a risk which the industry needs to address to ensure mishaps don’t occur.

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