The struggle over who has the most subscribed YouTube channels sprouted in the real world a few months ago when fans of Felix "PewDiePie" Kjellberg started the campaign to raise awareness of the star of Sweden. Underwater efforts were mostly fun – but recently people on social media reported that someone had sent them to the hacker to subscribe to PewDiePie.
For years, Kjellberg has maintained its top channel status on YouTube, but recently his claim was thrilled by the T-series, a channel owned by Indian music production. The T-series growth rate in 2018 was explosive: it currently has more than 72 million subscribers, putting about 150,000 fans behind Kjellberg. Judging by the T-Series subscriber line, many observers estimate that the channel will eventually become PewDiePie, but Kjellberg and his fans support the fight.
Recent Broadcasts from Kjellberg often contain segments where they invite fans to persuade people to subscribe to it. As a result, PewDiePie fans have done everything from putting posters to play Kjellberg's supporters against the T-series at the club, One YouTube launched a city-wide campaign where they purchased each individual inventory, radio spot, and local TV spot available for the PewDiePie channel. Together, fans have ensured that Kjellberg stays narrowly ahead of the T-Series longer than anyone else expects.
For the last couple of days, Twitter users have posted unsolicited screenshots from internet-connected printers that say PewDiePie needs help. "PewDiePie, currently the most subscribed to the YouTube channel, is about to lose its position as a number one Indian company called the T-Series that simply uploads videos to Bollywood trailers and campaigns," says the list. The print tells people to subscribe to Kjellberg and to "tell everyone you know" about the YouTube race. Finally, there is an ASCII figure of "brothers", the gesture for which Kjellberg is known. Screenshots have no specific origin; allegedly received by users from Canada in the UK.
The Hacker on Twitter assumes responsibility for the prints, stating that the stunt is obviously their way of raising awareness of printer security.
Spread word to your friends about printers and printer security! This is actually a scary thing. Will he tweet all about this whole #pewdiepie hack later explain to everyone exactly what went down. Also @pewdiepie please let me know
– TheHackerGiraffe (@HackerGiraffe) November 30, 2018
According to @HackerGiraffe tweets, they have used an open network port available on hundreds of thousands of printers around the world. This is a known vulnerability that allows printers to receive data. To do this, the hacker claims to have used a tool called PRET which, according to the GitHub page, allows attackers to "catch[e] or manipulation[e] print tasks, file system access and printer memory, or even physical damage to the device. "
"Your printer is exposed," TheHackerGiraffe told Twitter. "Am I trying to warn you to close it, how else would I draw your attention?"
"I did not think this could work if I did," TheHackerGiraffe said on Twitter. Border has reached the hacker by looking for evidence linking them to the exploiter, and we will update this post when we hear it back.