Office Printers: A Hacker’s Gateway To Your Network

Hacker using laptop to hack business printers

Written by: Jay H.

When it comes to cybersecurity, you probably think about securing your computers, servers, applications, and data from attacks. However, one vulnerable device often overlooked is your office printer, which hackers can use as a gateway into your system.

How Can Attackers Hack My Printer?

Because most people overlook their printers in cybersecurity, hackers look to exploit these devices. And they can easily.

Printers handle a lot of sensitive documents. They print and scan employee information, tax forms, and financial and medical records, all of which cybercriminals would love to get their hands on. Printers store previous print jobs in their hard drives, letting hackers see them if they gain access.

Hackers can also intercept files during wireless transmission, as modern printers use Internet connections. So not only can hackers exploit open network ports to view data, but they can also transmit their own data through the machine.

How Do I Protect My Business Printers?

You need to include your business printers in your cybersecurity strategy. Use the following strategies to protect your printers:

  • Install printer software updates as they are released.
  • Change your printer’s default username and password by logging into the web interface.
  • Restrict access to the printers with a firewall and only permit company-owned devices to connect.
  • Use built-in security features, such as requiring a PIN before printing if possible.
  • If your printer handles highly confidential information, do not connect it to any networks and instead plug it directly into your PC.
  • Only access your printer from secure and private networks.

You can also secure your devices by partnering with an IT company like Design2Web IT to handle your small-medium business’ cybersecurity. Take the pain from securing your organization and contact us today to learn more about our network security solutions.

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