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Open AccessArticle

LED Arrays of Laser Printers as Valuable Sources of Electromagnetic Waves for Acquisition of Graphic Data

1
Electromagnetic Compatibility Department and Laboratory, Military Communication Institute, 05-130 Zegrze Poludniowe, Poland
2
Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science, University of Denver, Denver, CO 80208, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Electronics 2019, 8(10), 1078; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics8101078
Received: 15 August 2019 / Revised: 17 September 2019 / Accepted: 23 September 2019 / Published: 23 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Applications of Electromagnetic Waves)
Classified information may be derivable from unintended electromagnetic signals. This article presents a technical analysis of LED arrays used in monochrome computer printers and their contribution to unintentional electromagnetic emanations. Analyses were based on realistic type sizes and distribution of glyphs. Usable pictures were reconstructed from intercepted radio frequency (RF) emanations. We observed differences in the legibility of information receivable at a distance that we attribute to different ways used by printer designers to control the LED arrays, particularly the difference between relatively high voltage single-ended waveforms and lower-voltage differential signals. To decode the compromising emanations required knowledge of—or guessing—printer operating parameters including resolution, printing speed, and paper size. Measurements were carried out across differences in construction and control of the LED arrays in tested printers. View Full-Text
Keywords: pattern recognition; image processing; graphic information; LED array; laser printer; compromising emanations; electromagnetic infiltration; reconstruction; non-invasive data acquisition pattern recognition; image processing; graphic information; LED array; laser printer; compromising emanations; electromagnetic infiltration; reconstruction; non-invasive data acquisition
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kubiak, I.; Loughry, J. LED Arrays of Laser Printers as Valuable Sources of Electromagnetic Waves for Acquisition of Graphic Data. Electronics 2019, 8, 1078.

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