Backdoor resetting oven and printer.

Thread Starter

bootloader9800

Joined Jan 12, 2021
79
Hello All!

2 Stories b4 the question.

1) My friend's oven has a setting where it goes into warm mode ( 200 F) after baking something. He looked on the internet and learnt that he can increase this warm time to 45 minutes by pushing the 'Bake' button 9 times while holding the 'Cancel' button and then quickly pushing the 'Broil' button 4 times.
2) I saw a video where I can reset the paper count on my printer by pushing a certain button 6 times and opening and closing the ink door quickly and then hitting cancel 4 times.

In both cases, how did the 'hacker-dudes' who put this info out on the internet figure this backdoor method of hacking the hardware?
Do you think they found out a schematic of the IC of the oven/ printer and sat around and figured out how to reset the hardware? Even if they have a schematic, coming up with the combinations of inputs to make a certain piece of hardware do something doesn't seem like an easy task.

Please let me know how you think people can just 'figure out' these backdoor methods?

As always, thank you for your replies!!

( Yes, in both cases I am assuming that the 'hacker-dudes' didn't get their hands on some sort of troubleshooting technical manual that the manufacturers of the oven and printer might have made it available for their repair team)
 

MrChips

Joined Oct 2, 2009
26,481
Good question. Sometimes hackers can get lucky by trying different things. In this case I would think not.

In a lot of digital electronic devices there are secret, hidden, undocumented features to enable one to get in the backdoor.
It would be difficult to find these by just random experimenting. These cannot be evident by looking at a schematic. This information has to be leaked out by an employee or by attending in-house technical training sessions.

I have an Android tablet. In order to turn on debugging mode you have to press a special key 7 times. Go figure!
 

JWHassler

Joined Sep 25, 2013
294
It's almost certain that these methods were documented (however informally,) and the information made available by a leak from a technician.
A disassembly of the controller's (E)PROM could also work, but that's harder and harder to do any more. (Don't ask)
 

peterdeco

Joined Oct 8, 2019
484
A long time ago when the Kindle first came out there were similar hacks to make it do different things. There was no way someone tinkering with it could have figured them out. I agree they have to be a leak from someone in the company.
 
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