Tuesday, June 6, 2017

"The Mysterious Printer Code That Could Have Led the FBI to Reality Winner"


As you can probably see now, the dots are printed in a repeating rectangular pattern. They’re a code.


“In a purported effort to identify counterfeiters the U.S. government has succeeded in persuading some color laser printer manufacturers to encode each page with identifying information,” they write.

The idea was that color laser printers might be (or become) so good that anyone could just print money. So, manufacturers were persuaded to add this countermeasure into the software that’s baked into some printers. When someone prints in color on one of these machines, the printer does everything normally, but also adds this nearly invisible identifying stamp. (If they print in black and white, though, there are no dots.)