Unsecured printers: the most overlooked threat to your business security

woman using multi-function printer in office

Aug 12, 2020

When it comes to business security, it is important to think of your printers as an extension of your overall network just like your PCs, email, and data systems. This is because hackers can easily access your information through these devices, especially if these machines are outdated and have no implemented security features. According to the Global Print Security Report, 60% of businesses in the U.S. suffered a print-related data breach in 2019, costing on average $400,000. 
The risk to your data
Would you give a stranger access to your company’s financial records, HR documents or business plans? We hope not. Yet, companies with unsecured printers/copiers are leaving a backdoor open for hackers to access important business data. Cybercriminals can detect when a printer has no firewall, password protection, or other security features enabled. They can then use these unsecured devices to connect to internal systems and collect data all while remaining completely unnoticed to your IT team. 
Modern devices typically come with multiple security features such as password protection, encryption capabilities and firewalls that can help protect your data from cybercriminals. When evaluating your current printers or looking for new ones, be sure to value security features as much as the productivity capabilities of those print devices.
The risk to your systems
70% of IT professionals overlook printer security as a cybersecurity risk, according to a May 2019 Spiceworks survey. This means that even though modern printers come with multiple security features to keep connected devices and their data safe, few businesses are taking full advantage of these innovations. There are more than 250 possible security settings on an Enterprise MFP. Unless you are actively monitoring your print environment day in and day out, you cannot be confident that all of the security risks are addressed. Something as simple as a reboot can cause your entire network to be at risk. Having the correct security tools in place is so critical, you can both evaluate your environment and then take steps to secure it.
A clear solution
The 2019 Sonicwall Cyber Threat Report states that the risk to print devices connected to business networks has increased by more than 200% in recent years. Securing your devices is only part of the solution, maintaining your security is vital.  
As a leader in business technology solutions, Milner knows how vital print devices are when it comes to your company’s overall operations. We offer a comprehensive print assessment that evaluates your printer fleet and shows you how to reduce your business’ risk of security threats. Take our free assessment today and see where your business’ printer security stands.