Print Security (Part 3 of 3)

by André Schnibbe

Protection of company data and print security is taking on an ever greater role, and more resources than ever are being given over to ensuring their security. In this three-part series on our blog, you’ll learn many things about dangerous situations in printing, as well as the ways to prevent them. Today I’ll show you how you can make your print processes more secure.

Recommendations for Secure Printing

In the print environment, protection is based on three pillars – systems, data, and documents. Precautions should be made for every area, in order to handle the situations mentioned in Part 1 and Part 2. This includes the following measures::

  • Using passwords where possible, and closing unnecessary protocols and servces/ports ..
  • A large amount of data deletion, data encryption and physical hard disk backup is needed to protect your hard disk. This also includes securely wiping the hard disk before it is sold, leased, or disposed of. Formatting isn’t enough; the Security-printing-workflow-3-en Print Security (Part 3 of 3)disks must be overwritten multiple times with the help of special tools. Some printer manufacturers will remove the hard disks and give them to the customer.
  • Central recording systems and admin tools should be used, so that system error messages are recognized immediately and directed to the right place. With these tools, system use can be documented and violations tracked.
  • Centrally Monitoring Network Activities. Use of network sniffers to trace all activity in the network, such as who is sending communication, whether all encryption mechanisms are active, etc.
  • Protection of servers (i.e. print serverswith firewalls).
  • TLS encrypted data transmission directly from the application (SAP, Windows, PLM…) via the output server to the print system. This encryption protects print data streams continuously end-to-end. The server used for the print editing must be protected as well, to prevent unauthorized access.
  • The use of watermarks, security paper and sealed disposal boxes for the destruction of confidential documents..
  • Release print orders only to authorized parties. Use manufacture-independent Secure & PickUp printing. Protect “anonymous” MFPs and confidential documents from being misused or accidentally taken.
  • Use permissions to control access. Limit certain functions to certain user groups, for example placing function restrictions on scanning or sending faxes. This also includes workflow restrictions on access to network drives, SharePoint, etc., so that employees cannot access certain directories or libraries.
  • Delete uncollected print data. Print data held or stored on servers should be completely deleted according to clearly defined rules.
  • Set up rule-based printing. Defined print workflows are used here. For example, the documents in a printing job from the personnel department will always be directed to a secure printer in an access-restricted room. Or watermarks can be placed on the document for certain print processes.
  • Document Encryption. Along with the continuous encryption of print data streams, the actual document can also be encrypted. The data is encrypted with a public key on the client side, and can be opened only by those with a valid private key. This key is given upon authentication to the printer.



Security-printing-shield-en Print Security (Part 3 of 3)

Countless and often underestimated dangers lurk in the printing and reproduction of confidential company documents. The resulting damages can easily cost institutions millions of euros, and damage their reputation indefinitely. SEAL Systems AG has been working in the area of output management for over 35 years. We know where the security pitfalls in print processes lie.

I’m happy to answer any questions you may have on the confidential handling of your confidential documents and data.


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