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Printer security breach? Not on your watch

Printer Security Breach? Not on Your Watch

After a year filled with high-profile network breaches, security has vaulted to the top of company IT priorities [1], and businesses are putting big budgets behind their attempts to address the problem. In fact, IT decision makers' spending on security technologies was forecasted to increase 46% in 2015, the highest of any area. [2]
But even with larger budgets, many IT departments are struggling to find efficient security solutions—especially when it comes to network security, where every link in a network is a potential vulnerability that needs to be addressed. While traditional network infrastructure like PCs, servers, and tablets have long had automated security measures available for them, security for networked printers has been much more difficult to implement—until this year.

Automatic printer security

Modern printers are much more than just office accessories. They're computers with hard drives, applications that run natively, wide-ranging network access—and all the potential vulnerabilities that come with being a PC. Because of this, unauthorized users can potentially discover device configurations, network information, user credentials, or information passed through a modern networked printer. [3]
Up-to-date PCs protect against these vulnerabilities with security that's both deep and broad, covering every process from boot up and startup to operation and fleet-wide protection. Effective printer security requires the same level of care. And for the first time, IT departments have that option for their modern printer fleet, as well. The new HP LaserJet Enterprise M500 series devices—the world's most secure printers [4]—now address each level of security.[4] Here's how:
  • At boot up: HP Sure Start validates the integrity of the BIOS code. If the BIOS is compromised, HP Sure Start reboots the device and loads a safe, “golden copy” of the BIOS.
  • On startup: During startup, the firmware is checked to ensure that it is authentic, known-good code—digitally signed by HP.
  • During operation: Run-time intrusion detection constantly monitors and detects anomalies during complex firmware and memory operations. In the event of an intrusion, the device automatically reboots.
  • Across components: Original HP Toner cartridges with JetIntelligence support printer fleet policies and work with HP LaserJet printers and MFPs to help customers protect themselves from fraud.
  • Across the fleet: After a reboot, HP Instant-On Security in HP JetAdvantage Security Manager checks and resets device security settings to maintain compliance with your security policies.

Security for small workforces

While security has become a top concern at the enterprise level, many smaller organizations have trouble making it a priority[5], especially without a large, dedicated IT staff. For these businesses, automated measures, like HP JetIntelligence, are available on small-workgroup class printers like the HP LaserJet Pro M402dn, and are an ideal first step in implementing features like anti-fraud technology with minimal additional effort.
Network security is a hot topic in any organization, big or small. So much so that in President Obama's recent address to the Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection Summit he said, “The problem of how we secure the digital world is only going to increase.[6]” To keep large problems like network security from overwhelming your own business, automated solutions like the ones now available for network printers like the HP LaserJet Enterprise M506dn will only become more valuable in the future.
[1] Protivity, Today's Enterprise – Cyberthreats Lurk Amid Major Transformation, 2015.
[2] IDG Enterprise, Computerworld Forecast Study, 2015. [3] Wired, Play Doom on a Printer—Thanks to a Serious Security Flaw, 2014. [4] Based on HP review of 2015 published embedded security features of competitive in-class printers. Only HP offers a combination of security features for integrity checking down to the BIOS with self-healing capabilities. A FutureSmart service pack update may be required to activate security features on the HP LaserJet M527, M506, M577. Some features will be made available as a HP FutureSmart service pack update on select existing enterprise printer models. For list of compatible products, click here. For more information visit: www.hp.com/go/LJsecurityclaims [5] Techaisle, Top 10 SMB Business Issues, IT Priorities, IT Challenges, 2015. [6] Office of the Press Secretary, Remarks by the President at the Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection Summit, 2015.

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