Keeping print secure in the digital economy, by Darren Bird, Head of Technology, Xeretec
Recently, I considered the sort of risks that network devices pose internally. This week, I’m looking at the growing risk to networked devices posed by external hackers. Connected devices with web-browsers are a great entry point to a company’s network and all the confidential customer and business data held within in. Whether you’re a major brand or an SME, the consequences can be the same – a direct impact to the business, concerned customers whose details may have been compromised, and an incalculable damage to customers’ trust in a brand that can rock its reputation for years.
I think there is a reason why organisations place a lower priority on print security. Simply put, print, as a business function, is often overlooked. Only recently have companies started to wake up to the fact that unmanaged print is a hidden – yet considerable – cost to an organisation. If print costs are only starting to become a realisation for many companies, then it may take even longer for them to appreciate the security vulnerabilities that print and print devices expose a business to.
Another factor could be that we typically view security as being a ‘computer’ or a ‘network’ problem. It’s widely thought that it’s their content which is of value to a hacker, which is true – but a gateway to those robustly protected assets, could be the innocuous MFP in the corner of the office. Businesses need to realise that it’s just as important to protect the gateway as it is to protect the assets cybercriminals want to steal.
One of my concerns centres on whether businesses are simply unaware of the security risks that printers pose. Therefore, I see it as Xeretec’s role to ensure that print security is an integral part of end-users’ IT security policies. This is where our long history of working with clients in sectors where data confidentiality is vital – from financial services, legal and healthcare – pays dividends. We are able to apply our security knowledge and experience to ensure that print security is an integral part of a company’s overall security policy. We regularly work with clients to review their device security to ensure that it continues to be fit for purpose. Furthermore, from a device perspective and to protect against attacks, Xerox and McAfee teamed up to design a security system to help companies protect against threats to their confidential data; we’re able to offer this combined solution.
While no one knows what 2017 holds, one thing is for sure – hackers will remain as active as ever. Talk to us to ensure that your devices are as well protected as they can be against internal and external risks and, between us, we can make hackers’ lives harder while protecting your company’s data, brand and reputation.