Secure printing: how print providers can protect information

August 21, 2023

In a data-driven world, print providers must invest in ways to preserve sensitive data. See how print providers can protect information.

In a technology and data-driven world, businesses are adopting digitization workflows and making real-time decisions based on data. This new reality has transformed the importance of security, including printing related. It’s no wonder that 6 out of 10 companies consider printing a risk area in their business. 

In this context, organizations of all sizes and industries seek mechanisms to protect their information, including the privacy of their customer’s data. It has become imperative, therefore, for print providers to invest in print management solutions that can minimize the threats to which every business is exposed today

But what does secure printing mean?

Ultimately, secure printing aims to ensure that only the person who sent the document for printing—or has gone through a digitizing process workflow —have access to it. Of course, that should be extended to a department, its peers, and superiors involved in that area and need of the information. 

In a way, it is possible to adopt data laws concepts to illustrate secure printing. According to data laws, the goal is to protect fundamental rights such as the “freedom and privacy” of an individual. Secure printing should do the same for a company’s information as well as for its customers, increasing the perceived value delivered to the customer. 

How is it possible to ensure secure printing?

There is a range of factors that need to be considered to ensure secure printing: 

Infrastructure – The most current print management and digitization workflow solutions are Software as a Service (SaaS). That means that all the necessary infrastructure for operation is external, through the cloud. The technology allows print providers to ensure their clients’ peace of mind, reducing the need for local installations or other types of access. However, print providers are responsible for securing network and device access if necessary. 

User control – It must identify users and their usage authorizations within these platforms. That helps clients control the volume of printing through quotas and print policies, while on the other hand, it allows for user authentication through double authentication methods. 

Secure printing

One of the best practices to adopt is the so-called secure print release. With this method, users can only authorize document printing or scanning through a second authentication. The document is sent from the user’s machine and then securely released via ID card, biometrics, password, or PIN. That avoids another risk: sensitive information being left in the output trays of devices. Discover other advantages of this feature! 

Constant monitoring – The human factor is present in all security elements, and it is no different in secure printing. The platform needs to monitor each user’s actions within the system. Any situation that deviates from the routine should trigger an alert, requiring monitoring and appropriate action. 

Encryption – Print data needs to be encrypted. That precaution prevents cybercriminals from accessing sensitive data even if there is any kind of intrusion. Within data management, backups, and data recovery capabilities are crucial to provide tranquility to the print provider and their client. 

Regarding secure printing, the client relies on the print provider’s expertise to have peace of mind in print management, which includes security. Therefore, it is the print provider’s responsibility to maintain an active monitoring stance, keeping up with security trends in the industry. That makes it easier to identify vulnerabilities and adopt preventive measures. 

A recent survey conducted in 2022 revealed that 4 out of 10 companies reported cybersecurity difficulties. And one of the most vulnerable areas was precisely the printing fleet. 

Speak with one of our specialists and learn more about the security aspects of NDD Print! 

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