Is It Time to Upgrade Your Printer?

Michelle Petrovic

Take a moment to think about your printer. How old is it? Is it still plugging along? We’re all guilty of it: keeping a printer longer than we should, because it still works. But, did you know that printers can be an entry point into your network?

Today’s printers are just as complex as a PC with processors running Windows or Linux, hard drives, wireless network connections, displays, and email capabilities. The ability to print, copy, and email creates a security risk that allows hackers into your network. Malicious attacks can occur from both inside and outside your network. Because of this, security needs to be built in from the start to protect your network from attacks.

Shift to Remote Work Means Greater Cyber Risk

With more employees working from home, the threat of a data breach is greater than ever. A recent HP study showed that 74% of employees are working from home due to COVID-19. Many of these employees don’t have a dedicated office space or cyber security defenses that they would have in their office. Along with ensuring employee computers are secure, what about their printers? The surge of sudden home workers provides the need for home printing. How do you protect these devices?

A great place to start is with a printer that has a self-healing BIOS. HP Printers have Sure Start built in to validate the integrity of the BIOS when powering up. If the BIOS has been compromised, the printer will restart with a golden copy, without any IT intervention. More and more attacks are happening at startup. By protecting the device at the BIOS level, you can ensure your network is protected beyond any firewalls.

Protect Your Printer from Unauthorized Access

The next step is to make sure your printer firmware is protected. HP Printers come equipped with Whitelisting to check for authentic firmware. Compromised firmware can create an environment ripe for the picking. Whitelisting checks for anomalies during firmware and memory operations, will automatically stop the intrusion, and reboot to keep your network protected.

In addition to protecting your printer before and during the boot-up process, HP Printers have continuous monitoring with run-time intrusion and HP Connection Inspector. Both work together to monitor memory activity and outgoing network connections to stop malware in its tracks. If malware is detected, both stop the intrusion and trigger a reboot.

The increase in employees working from home leaves your network open to attacks. The longer everyone is remote, the more everyone needs a home printer. This opens your network to attacks. Every device decision is a security decision, including your print fleet. Remote employees don’t have the same security features that they have in the office. It’s more critical than ever to make sure every device that employees use is protected. HP Printers can help safeguard your network both in and out of the office!

Michelle is a Product Manager for Workplace Transformation at Connection. She has more than 10 years of experience with endpoint devices in both the consumer and commercial space. In her free time, Michelle likes to travel.