4-Step Guide to Building a Secure Printing Strategy

Does worrying about data security keep you up at night? You’re not alone.

Every day, it seems like there’s news about another company’s confidential data getting breached by a hacker. What IT leader wouldn’t be nervous? Most people assume hackers acquire this data through traditional computers.

However, many breaches actually happen by breaking in through unsecured printing devices. 

Printers play a critical role in your overall security strategy. Without a clear roadmap, it’s tricky to determine where to begin. Though working alongside an experienced managed print services (MPS) partner is the most stress-free option, there are also actions you can take on your own. Here’s a quick 4-step guide to building a secure printing strategy:

1.  Always Secure Your Devices

Few things are more important than securing ALL devices connected to your network—no matter how rarely or how often they’re used. 

Especially in larger companies, there should always be a clear security policy that ensures every device is fully secured. If you’re unsure whether a particular device is safe, it’s best to assume it’s not. Rather than open your company up to unnecessary risk, remove that device from your network until it’s updated or replaced by a verifiably secure model. 

2.  Is Every Device Held to the Same Standard?

You don’t hold your employees to different standards. So, why would you do anything different with your printing devices?

It’s all too common for businesses to underestimate the importance of printer security. This often leads to IT teams focusing more on desktop or laptop computer security and much less on printers and copiers. Avoid making this mistake and build a clear security policy that ensures all machines on your network follow the same stringent security policies.

If keeping track of every device sounds overwhelming—relax. There are many great tools that’ll help your team stay up-to-date with security. One of our favorites is the HP JetAdvantage Security Manager. If a device falls out of compliance, the software will automatically alert you. Then, you can jump on getting your machines fully up-to-date.

For more great network security products, check out this article about the 3 types of print management software that every business needs.


3. Secure Your Printer’s Output

Once you’ve established a security policy with fully compliant devices, it’s time to secure your printer output. After all, stray printed pages with critical or confidential information can also cause a security breach.

One great tool that combats this issue is PaperCut. This program requires authentication at the printer itself before users can approve a job to be released for print from the queue. Authentication can be done in a number of ways such as swiping with a badge or entering a PIN. This keeps sensitive data from falling into the wrong hands. 

4. Work with a Managed Print Partner 

If you’re part of an IT team, there’s so much more to worry about than just printers. From new employee training to setting up new workstations, it’s no surprise that printer security often falls on the back burner. 

That’s why many businesses work with an MPS partner. These printer and copier experts will ensure that your network security programs never become outdated. They’ll even evaluate your office’s current print environment and help devise a secure print strategy allowing for total peace-of-mind. 

By following these four easy steps, any IT professional or tech team can confidently know that their company’s entire printer fleet is safe and secure. 

If you want to ensure your organization is up-to-date with the latest printer security technology, we’d love to connect. Simply schedule a free, 15-minute call with us and an imageOne expert will be happy to help you!