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5 Scary Print and Scan Security Risks to address this Halloween

When you think of October you conjure up visions of leaves changing color, pumpkins, dressing up as witches and ghosts and of course trick or treating. Halloween is almost here, and to mark this, we have hunted down five of the scariest print and scan security risks. Be afraid. Be very afraid.
From ghoulies and ghosties and long-legged beasties to things that go bump in the night, your print infrastructure can also give you a fright. Print security risks threaten every organization, regardless of size. October also happens to be National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM), and the theme for this year is “If You Connect It, Protect It”.
Having an unsecured printing environment can greatly damage a business. From vulnerable printers, hard drives and devices through to human error, being exposed to a data breach is bad news. Print is considered to be one of the top security risks to any organization.
In 2020, the global average total cost of a data breach is $3.46 million. Not only is that a shocking number, but the impact to your organization long term is immeasurable. Despite the rise in data breaches and associated damage, print infrastructure continues to be an overlooked security risk.

Trick or treat?

The teams here at Y Soft are not easily scared, so we have done the spooky work for you and compiled a list of five scary security situations, and what you can do about them to turn them into a treat.

1. The perilous case of the abandoned print  -- You’ve pressed print, you’re in a rush and bump into a colleague, which distracts you. You forget to collect your document from the printer. This sensitive document sits in the tray and can be seen and picked up by anyone. This typical scenario is actually pretty startling. An abandoned document poses a security risk and the chance of it ending up in the wrong hands. Any document left unsecured may easily be taken by anyone.
Don’t risk it. Use secure Print Roaming to mitigate this risk. This keeps the print job on hold until an employee authenticates at the printer at a time and location they choose to release the print job. Case solved

2 Haunted house of hackers / Something wicked this way comes -- You wouldn’t leave your front door open for just anybody to come in and help themselves, but this is exactly what a lot of organizations do with their print network. Multi-functional devices (MFDs) are portals with access to wireless networks, reports, systems and crucially, an organization’s data. Hackers can easily intercept confidential files or gain access to systems through an unsecured print environment. 52% of data breaches observed in 2020 were caused by malicious attacks. With more people using their own moible devices as well, the risk is exacerbated.
Lock it up. Use encryption to protect data in every state from being compromised, as well as any information that can be accessed from the printer. YSoft SAFEQ and SAFEQ Cloud secures data through standard protocols and data encryption.  

3. Hard drive of horror -- Copies, prints and scans are written onto an MFD’s hard disk, just waiting to be accessed through an attack. You may well have the entire back history of your activity sitting there. With so many different devices and locations, it is a spooky prospect.
Don’t scream. If you are replacing legacy devices, make sure you properly dispose of the hard drive either by degaussing or shredding. Rest assured, YSoft SafeQ and SAFEQ Cloud do not permanently store any print or copy data on the MFD’s hard drive. Phew!

4. Devilishly disappearing files -- You’ve scanned your important document, but where did it go? It turns out you’ve misnamed the file, misfiled it or emailed it to the wrong address. It’s gone. Ouch.
There’s no need to be superstitious. Using YSoft SAFEQ Automated Scan Workflows, documents are securely delivered to predefined destinations. Automatically filing and naming documents magically resolves the problem of disappearing files.

5. Shadowy secrets -- You have no idea what is happening in your print environment; it’s shrouded in mystery. You can’t track your printing, copying or scanning activity, making you vulnerable. Anyone can print or scan any document and email it out, which is rather spine-chilling. The less you can track, the more vulnerable your print environment is.
Get a grip. YSoft SAFEQ Reporting provides in-depth reports showing access and activity. You can see how your MFD’s are being used, helping you to ensure the environment is secure and users are adhering to internal usage policies. Having an audit trail will highlight any unusual spooky behavior.

It’s not hocus pocus

Security can be a real nightmare if it isn’t done properly. We hope we haven’t scared you too much in our cautionary tale, but this scary story is true all year round. Each of these five tricks can be turned into treats to benefit your company, whatever the size, with our help. Security is important, stay safe and secure with Y Soft.
This October, may your treats be many and your tricks be few.

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