Researchers Find Security Vulnerabilities in 3D-Printing Process

By introducing tiny imperfections, hackers could seriously weaken 3D products, according to new research from NYU Tandon's Nikhil Gupta. Stupid figurines? Nah. Airplane parts? Yeah.

A team of researchers at NYU Tandon published a paper last week, finding several types of potential security vulnerabilities in the 3D printing process. In particular, the researchers focused on the insertion of fine defects, and the orientation of the printer head.

“Recently, the FAA [Federal Aviation Administration] approved the first 3D-printed part, a fuel nozzle, for use in aircraft engines,” Nikhil Gupta, an associate professor of mechanical engineering at Tandon, and a coauthor of the paper, said in an interview. “Examples of many other industrial and medical applications are now available in which 3D-printed parts are put into service.”

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