Cybercrime is one of the biggest security risks companies face today, with 73% of CISO’s expecting a security breach within a year. These events cost businesses over $7 million each year, making security a critical priority. However, printers are frequently overlooked when developing security protocols, leaving your business at risk.
Printers are vulnerable in a number of ways, and if they are on your network they put your entire network at risk. Key areas to consider include:
- Mobile printing putting data at risk
- Internal hard drive storage in the printer containing sensitive data
- Lack of encryption
- Documents left on the output tray
- Lack of user authentication
- Cloud computing
- Printer routing
Knowing where the vulnerabilities lie can help you formulate an action plan to protect your printers, network, and data.
The first step to protecting your printer is choosing a printer that has built-in security options. Features such as automatic encryption, user authentication, and control access can greatly reduce your risk of being hacked through your printer. You should also choose a printer that makes it easy to periodically clear the hard drive. It is also important to be sure the hard drive is destroyed before recycling your old printers.
Your documents also need to be protected at many levels. If you choose to use cloud computing, choose a secure server with multi-level security. Mobile printing should also have multiple levels of security to protect your data in transit. Pull-printing in the office can eliminate documents left on the output tray so sensitive data is not breached.
Protecting your network should be one of your top priorities, but your in-house IT team may not be fully up to date on the latest security techniques. You may want to consider hiring a service that specializes in network security to assess your network and help develop a comprehensive network security plan. This can help shore up any gaps in your current security plan and protect your company from an expensive and damaging data breach.
Cyber crimes are on the rise and if you don’t take precautions your business could be the next victim. It’s not enough to protect your computers; every device on your network must be secured including your printers. With a multi-level security protocol, you can help reduce the chances that your network and data is breached.