It’s just a copy machine…right? Actually, your copier/multi-function device is more likely a sophisticated computer with a hard drive that can store around 20,000 documents. Sensitive information like payroll or tax documents may be saved permanently — making the machine a security risk when it’s retired, replaced, or repossessed.
A recent report by CBS News revealed some startling and disturbing information:
Many devices use hard-drive storage so they are capable of printing multiple copy sets without recycling originals through the document handler. Those same hard drives let the copiers do double duty as high volume printers, fax machines and email terminals (copy it and send it). Storing the data and making the copier addressable on a network can make the data vulnerable to anyone with physical or network access to the machine. Several manufacturers offer data security options with their machines, but the option has to be purchased and turned on to work. Questions? Call us at 1-800-434-9011.
What You Can Do
There are steps you can take to minimize the risk of exposing sensitive data to the wrong eyes.
- When purchasing or leasing new devices with disk storage, ensure that the machines include data protection features such as encryption, overwriting, or data “shredding.”
- Check any current units to see that data security features, if present, are enabled.
- Don’t forget to check for network access controls.
- Determine whether data security can be retro-fitted on any machines without the feature.
- Before selling or trading in any current machines with data storage, ensure that the hard drives have been thoroughly scrubbed.
If you aren’t sure about the level of protection you have, or if you need to have the hard drive in your current devices wiped, give us a call at 1-800-434-9011.