An area often overlooked when companies develop information, and data security controls are the printers and copiers situated around the office. As the rise in cybercrime continues, these devices provide an easy injection point that bad actors could use to infect a company’s information systems. Printers and copiers have become sophisticated machines that run their advanced software, making them the ideal target if the company doesn’t use secure printing.
Companies face many challenges in keeping their data secure. While it’s common to ensure access and authorization controls protect digital information, it’s less common to apply similar controls on printers and copiers. However, extending security practices to the company’s printing fleet brings additional benefits to the organization.
4 Advantages of Secure Printing for Organizations
If a company suffers a successful cyberattack, the effects can be devastating. Firstly, there may be a financial cost from the attack in either lost revenue or having to pay a ransom to regain control of the network. Similarly, there’s the reputational damage the company will suffer, and there could be civil liabilities involved.
It’s clear that the risks greatly outweigh the cost of extending security controls to the company’s printing fleet. Solutions also provide the organization with additional benefits and advantages of secure printing. Preventing the unintended disclosure or interception of information should be a primary concern for today’s businesses.
1. Secure Printing is Now Part of Information Security Best Practices
Every large enterprise or institution now knows that securing their printers is a vital part of their network security policies. Traditionally, IT Administrators didn’t view these devices as the network computers they’ve become over the last two decades. This led to ambiguity in whose role it was to keep them protected within the organization.
Since the vulnerabilities became widely publicized, most institutions now include printers and copiers as part of their overall data security best practices. IT Administrators and security professionals include printers and copiers as a consideration during their efforts to keep networks protected against cybercriminals and hackers.
Some of the best practices for printer security include:
- Updating firmware regularly and patching newly discovered security vulnerabilities
- Using encrypted connections for digital files during the transmission to the devices
- Establishing authorization and access controls on the devices
- Reducing the number of unnecessary services running on the device
- Changing default passwords and subjecting the device to the same stringent security controls as other workstations
2. Saving Money with Greater Oversight and Effective Tracking
With improved printer security, the company gains oversight of all its printing operations across its fleet of devices. This helps them reduce wasteful printing practices while also ensuring the company can track every print job to a specific user and device. An additional benefit is the company has better insight into their printing practices and can establish accurate budgets for these activities.
Uncontrolled printing costs can run quite high in an office environment. Most organizations still report that their key operational tasks, such as invoicing and human resources remain paper-intensive. However, 64% of small businesses cannot track their printing usage or associated costs. Regaining control over the print fleet will help any organization save money and cut waste from their daily workflows.
3. Reduced Cost of Compliance with Regulations
State and federal governments continue to enact legislation about information security. The Sarbanes-Oxley and HIPAA Acts are two pieces of legislation where companies need to demonstrate regular compliance. With secure printing, the company will have a complete audit trail of every print job in the organization.
If a breach occurs, the company can respond effectively and identify the culprit quickly. Secure printing additionally provides the company with the ability to revoke access to sensitive information and introduce pull-to-print controls on the device. A pull-to-print control requires a user to enter a pin or swipe an employee card at the device before the printer processes the job. This helps reduce the risk of an uncollected print job leading to the unauthorized disclosure of information.
4. Improve Productivity and Office Efficiency with Mobile Enabled Printers
Apart from integrations into existing software and security systems, modern secure printing solutions include mobile-enabled printing. The company’s staff can remain productive even when they aren’t at their desks. Depending on the size of the company, they can choose to implement follow-me-printing that allows users to send prints to the closest printer from their position. This saves a lot of time in organizations that have a vast geographical footprint and need quick access to records or documents pertaining to a client throughout the facility.
Imaging Warehouse as Your Wholesale Toner and Ink Cartridge Supplier
Maintaining successful print operations in a company requires ink and toner supplies to be available when they are needed. Imaging Warehouse is dedicated to customer service and helps wholesalers streamline their cartridge buying and selling tasks for reduced disruption. With shipping and collection services, Imaging Warehouse will ensure a wholesalers’ customers never run out of essential printing supplies in a time of need.
For more information about Imaging Warehouse’s ink and toner services, reach out to one of our friendly agents today.