Why Every Business should pay more Attention to Printer Security

When securing a network, computers and servers tend to be the first technologies to be ticked off within any IT infrastructure, while the “behind-the-desk technologies” like printers are often forgotten

portfolio of LaserJet and PageWide Enterprise printers to offer increased protection against these threats. This means detecting and thwarting malicious BIOS attacks; whitelisting which helps ensure only known, good firmware can be loaded and executed on a printer; and run-time Intrusion Detection, providing in-device memory monitoring for malicious attacks and detecting anomalies.

Securing the data: authenticate, encrypt and monitor

As well as securing printers from external threats, you need to protect the data. This should include user authentication when printing from either a PC or a mobile. This ensures that any user identifies themselves before using printers or changing printer settings. This can be done through PINs or other verifications and can eradicate the risk of the wrong person picking up a document.

Data encryption protocols can also prevent jobs/documents from being intercepted while traveling across a network or within the memory of the printer. Using advanced security controls and authentication through PINs, biometric solutions or smart cards that have to be used before access is granted, can also secure a device’s control panel.

The latest HP Enterprise printers with LaserJet and PageWide technologies will also automatically monitor for attacks, send information to the company’s security event monitoring system and initiate self-healing through a re-boot if the device is attacked, further protecting the device.

Securing the document: compliance and anti-counterfeit

The use of Managed Print Services solutions can also help you develop and implement a security plan that keeps apace with changing regulations and threats. This can also include pull printing and workflow solutions that can eradicate user behaviors that put hardcopy documents at risk. Pull printing works by allowing a print job to be stored on a protected server and only activate it once the sender of the print job identifies himself or herself at the printer.

Printers installed with physical locks and shielding on input trays can also help prevent theft, loss, tampering or forgery of hardcopy documents. According to the Ponemon Institute, nearly 65 percent of breaches are accidental, or due to employee negligence or business process failures, so pull printing and physical protection could eliminate behaviors that may be putting your data at risk.

Defending your network

Improving the security of networked printers involves securing devices, data and documents. It is only by adopting this kind of comprehensive approach that you can improve protection against malicious hacks, accidental internal breaches, and the reputational and financial ramifications of regulatory non-compliance.


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