Get All Access for $5/mo

Hackers Are Flooding Businesses' Receipt Printers With 'Anti-Work' Messages The messages direct their recipients to the r/antiwork subreddit, which gained traction during the Covid-19 pandemic when workers began advocating for more rights.

By Amanda Breen Edited by Jessica Thomas

Hackers are taking control of business receipt printers to circulate pro-labor messages, according to a report from Vice and posts on Reddit.

Screenshots posted on Reddit and Twitter reveal some of the messages. "Are you being underpaid?" one message asks. Another reads, "How can the McDonald's in Denmark pay their staff $22 an hour and still manage to sell a Big Mac for less than in America? Answer: UNIONS!"

Though the messages posted online vary, they share a pro-labor sentiment, with many leading their recipients to the r/antiwork subreddit, which gained traction during the Covid-19 pandemic when workers began advocating for more rights.

Related: A Business Leader's Beginner Guide to Cybersecurity

Many Reddit users appreciated the receipt hack, with one user calling it "hilarious," while some questioned the authenticity of the messages. But a cybersecurity firm that monitors the internet told Vice the messages are legitimate. "Someone is... blast[ing] raw TCP data directly to printer services across the internet," GreyNoise founder Andrew Morris said. "Basically to every single device that has port TCP 9100 open, and print[ing] a pre-written document that references /r/antiwork with some workers rights/counter capitalist messaging."

Morris also said it's a sophisticated operation — whoever's behind it is using 25 separate servers, so blocking one IP address won't necessarily be enough to stop the messages. "A technical person is broadcasting print requests for a document containing workers rights messaging to all printers that are misconfigured to be exposed to the internet," Morris continued.

Related: One Shockingly Common Blind Spot that Can Derail Your Company's Cybersecurity

Printers and other internet-connected devices can be very susceptible to attack; hackers are well-versed in taking advantage of those that are insecure. In 2018, a hacker took control of 50,000 printers to promote the controversial influencer PewDiePie.

Amanda Breen

Entrepreneur Staff

Senior Features Writer

Amanda Breen is a senior features writer at She is a graduate of Barnard College and received an MFA in writing at Columbia University, where she was a news fellow for the School of the Arts.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick


How to Close the Trust Gap Between You and Your Team — 5 Strategies for Leaders

Trust is tanking in your workplace. Here's how to fix it and become the boss your team needs to succeed.

Health & Wellness

Get a Year of Unlimited Yoga Class Downloads for Only $23 Through June 17

Regular exercise has been proven to increase energy and focus, both of which are valuable to entrepreneurs and well-known benefits of yoga.

Growing a Business

He Immigrated to the U.S. and Got a Job at McDonald's — Then His Aversion to Being 'Too Comfortable' Led to a Fast-Growing Company That's Hard to Miss

Voyo Popovic launched his moving and storage company in 2018 — and he's been innovating in the industry ever since.

Business News

'Passing By Wide Margins': Elon Musk Celebrates His 'Guaranteed Win' of the Highest Pay Package in U.S. Corporate History

Musk's Tesla pay package is almost 140 times higher than the annual pay of other high-performing CEOs.

Starting a Business

I Left the Corporate World to Start a Chicken Coop Business — Here Are 3 Valuable Lessons I Learned Along the Way

Board meetings were traded for barnyards as a thriving new venture hatched.

Business Culture

Why Remote Work Policies Are Good For the Environment

Remote work policies are crucial for ESG guidelines. Embracing remote work can positively impact your business and employees.