Data breaches can be extremely costly for small businesses. The Ponemon Institute’s Cost of Data Breach report found that in 2020, the average cost of a cybersecurity incident for an American business was $8.64 million. That is more than enough to send many small enterprises into bankruptcy. Cyberattacks destroy data. They lose customers, and they create third-party liabilities. Even if you have great cyber insurance, a data breach can disrupt your operations for months or even permanently. Chances are that your employees already know not to click on links in spam emails or to open files from unknown senders. You have firewalls installed on personal computers and rules for using personal computers to do company work at home. But did you know that your printers are also hackable? Managed Print Services (MPS) protects your company’s data at one of its greatest vulnerabilities. MPS is essential for protecting your data.
A Quick Refresh on Managed Print Services
Have you ever heard of Managed Print Services? If you haven’t, we need to introduce you to it.
Many companies turn to third parties for Managed Print Services when they experience schedule conflicts around their printers. Offices incur overtime when they have to schedule print runs at night. Or multiple divisions of the company have urgent printer needs simultaneously.
Managed Print Services stops printing from becoming a choke point for the efficient operation of your office. And MPS offers several other advantages for your company:
- Your MPS provider will optimize printer placement. Finding the locations on your office floor where the fewest employees take the least number of steps to pick up their printing jobs frees your staff for more important tasks.
- Your MPS provider will analyze printer usage. They will work with you for better scheduling of print runs so work is delivered faster and with fewer scheduling conflicts.
- Your MPS provider will reduce supply costs. They have connections to multiple vendors to find the lowest prices for paper, toner, inks, and other supplies. They will always have what you need.
- Your MPS provider will manage remote connections to your printers. Employees can submit print jobs from desktops, laptops, and phones. They do not need to be in close physical proximity to your computers to use them. Every connection to your printers is potentially hackable unless your MPS provides the IT to keep them secure.
The Importance of Printer Security for Businesses
We are all so used to printing from our computers that it is easy to forget that printers are part of the notoriously insecure Internet of Things (IoT). We were using local area networks to access printers before cybersecurity became a widespread concern, so, even today, many companies are unaware of cybersecurity vulnerabilities of their printers.
Here is what you need to remember about data security and your printers:
Any printer that can store information can be hacked.
Some of the older printers that can’t store information can also be hacked, but printer security is essential if your hardware is less than 20 years old.
Your Managed Print Services provider will ensure your printers are secure at every stage of their use.
- Your provider will make sure all printer functions are password protected. Many printers come with default passwords that are easily hacked.
- Your provider will ensure that the data sent from company computers and employee devices are encrypted. Raw data sent from devices may appear unreadable, but hackers can decode it.
- Your provider will prevent the alteration of corruption of data sent from your computers and employee devices to printers. This hacking is hard to detect, but it can have serious consequences.
- Your provider will prevent interruptions of service due to hardware and software failure.
- Your provider will stop spam. This saves paper, toner, inks, and wear and tear on printer parts.
- Your provider will detect and correct unpatched operating systems and firmware. Many printer manufacturers embed software that isn´t updated for security concerns. Your provider will make sure that old software does not create vulnerabilities for your printers and your entire network.
Of course, it is still possible for someone to steal your company data the old-fashioned way. They can walk away from your printer with a hard copy of the information of value to them. But your Managed Print Services vendor considers that possibility, too.
The Connection Between Data Security and Managed Print Services
A Managed Print Services provider does more than just monitor, manage, and optimize your printing needs and outputs. They do more than maintain supplies so you can enjoy seamless printing operations. And they do more than just anticipating and correcting printer issues so your employees can focus on what they do best.
Managed Print Services also manages your data security. The IT specialists who work with your provider can also ensure that using the printer doesn´t expose your company to data corruption and loss of critical data. Your MPS provider can help you avoid attacks by ransomware and breaches through your printer connections. They protect your company and your customers from cyberattacks through one of the prime targets of cybercriminals.
Managed Print Services can help you keep your data safe and avoid catastrophic disruptions to your Sacramento business due to cyberattacks. If you want to know more about how MPS can improve your data security contact Buckmaster Office Solutions today.