The rise of digitalization has brought about a significant increase in the amount of sensitive information being processed and stored by businesses. From financial records to confidential client data, these information assets are crucial to the functioning and success of an organization. As such, keeping them safe and secure must be a top priority for any business.
As printing remains a key aspect of office operations, it is essential to ensure that the sensitive information being printed, copied, and scanned is adequately protected. This is where managed print services (MPS) comes in, providing a comprehensive solution for managing document output while strengthening data security measures.
Understanding managed print services
MPS refers to an outsourced approach to managing an organization's printing needs. A third-party provider takes care of all aspects of the organization's printing infrastructure, including equipment, supplies, maintenance, and support. Focusing on streamlining printing processes and optimizing workflows, MPS helps businesses improve efficiency while reducing costs.
Protecting sensitive information with managed print services
Beyond optimizing printing processes, MPS also plays a significant role in addressing security concerns related to document output. By implementing the following security features and protocols, MPS helps safeguard sensitive information from unauthorized access, theft, or misuse.
Centralized document management
With MPS, all printing, copying, and scanning activities are managed and monitored from a single point, typically a secure cloud server. This centralized approach allows for better control and oversight over all print-related tasks, ensuring that sensitive information is not inadvertently shared or accessed by unauthorized individuals. It also helps prevent lost or misplaced documents, reducing the risk of data breaches.
MPS employs secure printing protocols that require users to authenticate their identity before accessing print jobs, keeping unauthorized individuals from viewing or retrieving confidential documents. Mechanisms such as secure PINs, proximity cards, and biometric authentication add an extra layer of security to the printing process, minimizing the risk of sensitive information falling into the wrong hands within a busy office environment.
Many printers and multifunction devices have internal memory or hard drives that temporarily store data from print jobs. This data can be vulnerable to unauthorized access if the device is not properly secured. MPS integrates data encryption capabilities that protect the data stored on these devices, making it unreadable and inaccessible to anyone without proper authorization.
Print tracking and auditing
MPS also enables businesses to track and audit printing activities, providing a comprehensive record of who printed what, when, and where. Using this information, organizations can identify potential security risks and take necessary actions to prevent them. Additionally, print tracking can help businesses enforce printing policies, such as limiting access to specific devices or setting print quotas for individual users.
Most printers in a corporate environment are networked to facilitate sharing and collaboration. However, if not properly secured, these networked printers can offer a potential entry point for cybercriminals.
To safeguard the print environment from network-based attacks, MPS providers implement robust network security measures, such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and secure network protocols. This effort further enhances the overall security posture of the organization, contributing to a comprehensive defense-in-depth strategy.
Regular software and hardware updates
As with any technology, printers and related devices require regular updates to ensure optimal performance and security. With MPS, these updates are automatically managed and implemented by the service provider, keeping the print environment up to date with the latest security patches and fixes. This reduces the risk of vulnerabilities in the printing infrastructure that can be exploited by hackers or malicious actors.
Secure disposal of documents and devices
MPS providers also offer secure document and device disposal services, ensuring that sensitive information is not left vulnerable even after it has been printed or stored on a printer's internal memory. Devices that have reached the end of their life span are securely wiped clean of any data before being disposed of, destroying any potential data trails that could be exploited.
Related reading: Important things to consider before using managed print services
Reach out to a reliable managed print services provider for enhanced security
Ultimately, MPS can be a powerful tool in safeguarding sensitive information and strengthening data protection measures within an organization. By partnering with a reliable MPS provider, businesses can benefit from enhanced security features and protocols that go beyond traditional printing infrastructure management.
If you're interested in exploring secure and comprehensive managed print solutions for your business, reach out to Complete Document Solutions today. Our team of experts can help you assess your printing needs and provide MPS solutions tailored to your needs.