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3D Printing of Guns

  • 1.  3D Printing of Guns

    Posted 08-01-2018 07:19
    Like many school districts, Orange County Schools (NC) has many 3D printers in maker spaces and media centers throughout the district. These are largely connected locally to desktops where there is not always strict accountability on the prevailing user credentials used to print objects.

    With the current national dialog surrounding using 3D printers to create functioning guns, we need to look at how we as a district can better track what is being printed, to ensure accountability.

    I am aware that the current technology used to print guns does not create a fully functioning weapon.  That said, we cannot assume that capability is not imminent and we want to be ready to respond to community questions about how we're ensuring students aren't using the largely un-managed district 3D printers to make weapons and other dangerous objects.

    Any input is appreciated.

    Todd Jones
    Chief of Technology
    Orange County Schools
    Hillsborough NC
    (919) 245-4100 (15001)

  • 2.  RE: 3D Printing of Guns

    Posted 08-02-2018 11:46

    I recommend starting with blocking access to the sites that host those 3d files, you should be able to black list these in the firewall. Below I have included the links to the sites currently known to host and or distribute 3d weapons files.


    also it is a great idea to implement unique login credentials for the machines connected to the 3d printers, so you have tractability to whom was using the device at what time. in the event a non-approved object (weapon, other object inappropriate for school) is printed you can go back to the student in question





    My .02

    Ryan Cloutier

    Principal Security Architect / Principal Enterprise Architect, CISSP®





    Ext 6822


  • 3.  RE: 3D Printing of Guns

    Posted 08-03-2018 12:38

    Block as well, they host the printing files also


    Alan Cunningham, CISSP

    Information Security Officer

    Washoe County School District

    425 E. 9th Street

    Reno, NV 89520-3425


    Sensitivity: Internal

  • 4.  RE: 3D Printing of Guns

    Posted 08-03-2018 19:34
    In Australia we have some differences around educational organisation (like the lack of a school district structure) but alignment in other areas such as discouraging inappropriate usage of IT resources.
    However it would seem that blocking individual websites that may host a 3D print file is an unsustainable approach that would put the IT team in a constant game of catch up.

    You could consider three options.

    1) Block unsuitable category's such as Porn, Weapons, Drugs & Gambling so that whenever a new site appears on the web and gets categorised it's automatically blocked for you. There are many services that will do this at a school or district level but you should note that this will only stop opportunistic or unplanned access. If a student want's to bring an inappropriate file, no amount of configuration will stop that file arriving on a USB in someones pocket.

    2) Administrative overhead is important to consider. Today the issue may be 3D printed weapons but tomorrow we are likely to have another challenge to deal with, so your response should be a more strategic longer term one. It would depend on your setup, but creating individual logins that need to be managed and tracked would seem like a lot of work for the IT team over a long term that may not catch a student that simply renames the file to something nice and friendly.

    3) Discourage the determined students by increasing their perceived risk factor. Something like a CCTV camera in the corner and a sign near the 3D printer saying the the printer is covered by CCTV might do the trick.

    Matthew Gausden
    Director of ICT - St Joseph's College
    MITIE Australia