Building a Print Security Strategy: 7 Factors to Consider
Data breaches have massive consequences for organizations – financial, legal, and reputational – making information security and protection a key focus moving forward.
The enormous repercussions of data breaches mean that security has to be considered at the board level and across the organization rather than just the IT department.
The landscape of cyber security is also constantly expanding as connected Internet of Things (IOT) endpoints continues to grow.
These endpoints include legacy and new smart printers and MFPs, however, print infrastructure security is often overlooked.
Organizations are reliant on print to support business processes, so they must take a proactive approach to print security as these devices can be a gateway to valuable and confidential information in the corporate network.
With 59% of business reporting a data loss due to printing, print security needs to have more emphasis.
Effective print security must be part of an organization’s overall IT security plan. Doing so enables the safe deployment of print infrastructure.
By taking steps to analyse the potential vulnerabilities of print environments, businesses can mitigate risks without compromising productivity.
Consider the following when building a print security strategy:
Print security is fundamental in your overall security strategy
Networked MFPs and printers process confidential and sensitive information, but also generates this information as an output.
Therefore, print security must be treated as a fundamental part of the overall security strategy.
Print security also has many layers – the device itself, the network, documents/information stored and produced, etc. A comprehensive risk assessment must be done.
Want to learn more? Check out this free webinar on why now is the time to secure your printing infrastructure!
Conduct a print security assessment
Evaluate your existing fleet to find potential weak points and security vulnerabilities – this is especially necessary when you have mixed fleet of legacy and new devices deployed.
An assessment will provide visibility to you print environment and will set the foundation for ongoing monitoring once your fleet is optimised and secured.
Print security starts with devices
When purchasing new devices, security and remote management must be a priority. Devices should be based on common interfaces and standardised management tools.
Consider print management software which is used to manage and monitor a variety of printing tasks for networks of printers.
UniPrint Infinity enables secure and reliable printing across all environments and printers through a single PDF-based Universal Printer Driver and single web-based management platform.
Access credentials and vulnerability management
One key challenged is the ability to upgrade firmware and patch devices. Legacy devices that are not patchable create a large vulnerability.
In addition, access credentials are weak point. Often times admin accounts are left untouched and default passwords are unchanged.
Protect print jobs while in motion and at rest
While end-to-end encryption of network traffic ensures secure transfer of print jobs to printers, most printers cache content, so locally stored data needs to be encrypted as well.
Regulations like PCI DSS require this. Consider adding secure pull printing to your environment.
Documents are only released when users authenticate their credentials by entering their passwords or tapping onto user authentication device. No more documents ending up in the wrong hands.
Monitor and analyze your print environment
Knowing the status of devices provides you with an overall view of the print environment.
Network monitoring tools help track devices and fix issues that arise.
Reporting and archiving features can track users and usage, which can be used to identify security risks and deploy quick responses to any attacks.
Educating users means a more secure environment
Data breach prevention starts with employees. It is vital that business have security training to education workers on the importance of protecting sensitive information.
With 32% of data loss incidents unintentionally cause by internal users, organizations but education and train end users on the potential risks associated with printing.
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