August 13, 2021

Recommendation to disable printing function on Windows computers still in effect

Photo of a multifunction copy machine with flying papers around it

A critical security flaw known as “PrintNightmare” that affects all Windows computers apparently has not been fully addressed by Microsoft, even though it released a patch for a service called Print Spooler on Aug. 10.

The flaw is a serious threat to any Windows computer connected to the Internet, and may allow remote attackers to compromise any vulnerable Windows  device. UW cybersecurity experts continue to recommend that the safest mitigation for this issue is to disable the print spooler on their computers until a full fix is available.

We understand that for some units and departments, the inability to print may present a challenging situation. We encourage you to speak to your IT support unit to find alternatives until the problem is fully resolved. The CISO website provides updates and information on assessing the risk associated with the Windows Print Spooler vulnerabilities.