Print Security – 1

Despite the move to digital communications, many businesses still rely on printing to support key business processes. MFPs are prevalent across businesses of all sizes and as such they are a critical network endpoint that must also be secured. Even behind a firewall, an MFP can be a front door to the network leading to the potential for compromising corporate or customer data.

With this in mind it seems an area where as much information as possible is made available, keeping it simple but useful for users at all levels. At ITQ we have been involved in print security since the advent of networked MFPs and would like to pass the knowledge gained on to you today through our series of blogs.

To start with how can your businesses minimise the risks? Fortunately, there are simple and effective approaches to protecting the print infrastructure. These methods not only enhance document security, but also promote sustainable printing practices – such as reducing paper wastage and printing costs. But for enterprises with a large and diverse printer/MFP fleet security may be of prime importance.

First off conduct a security assessment

For such enterprises, it is advisable to use a third-party provider to assess device, fleet and enterprise document security. This can evaluate all points of vulnerability across a mixed fleet and provide a tailored security plan, for devices, user access and end of life/disposal. Managed print service (MPS) providers commonly offer this as part of their assessment services.

Not all security assessments are equal

After cost, security is the second top driver for adoption of a MPS, indicated by 81% of respondents in a recent Quocirca survey. Consequently, many are taking up security assessments as part of their MPS process. Amongst organisations using MPS, the majority have started or completed a security assessment of their print infrastructure. This is more prevalent in the professional services sector where over half (55%) of organisations reported that they completed a security assessment compared to just 20% of public sector respondents

 MFP Security Vulnerabilities

The potential risks include:

  • Unclaimed output. Confidential or sensitive information can be collected inadvertently or intentionally by an unauthorised recipient.
  • Latent images on hard disk. All documents whether they are printed, copied, scanned, faxed or stored are processed within the hard disk drive. This can present a risk not only if the device is hacked, but also at the end of life when potential hard disk data could be recovered.
  • Unauthorised access to MFP functions. If MFP settings and controls are not secure, it is possible to alter and reroute print jobs, open saved copies of documents, or reset the printer to its factory defaults. Potential hackers could also attack print devices to either intercept or download copies of scanned-in documents, emails and user access credentials.
  • Network security risk. Jobs sent to the MFP for printing typically sit unprotected on the server queue. At this stage, the printing queue can be paused and files copied and the queue restarted. In the worst case, a user from the outside can obtain confidential information, or place malware on the device. Open network ports also present a security risk enabling the MFP to be hacked remotely via an internet connection. Printers can therefore be prime targets of denial-of-service (DoS) attacks. Further, if data transmitted to a printer is unencrypted, hackers are potentially able to access this data.

 The Quocirca research reveals that enterprises place a low priority on print security despite over 60% admitting that they have experienced a print-related data breach. Any data breach can be damaging for any company, leaving it open to fines and causing damage to its reputation and undermining customer confidence. In the UK alone estimates suggests that in 2013 the average organisational cost to a business suffering a data breach was £2.04m.

As the boundaries between personal and professional use of technology become increasingly blurred, the need for effective data security has never been greater. While many businesses look to safeguard their IT data hardware from external and internal threats, few pay the same strategic attention to protecting the print environment. Yet it remains a critical element of the IT infrastructure. Over 75% of enterprises indicating that print is critical or very important to their business activities.

The print landscape has changed dramatically over the past decade. Local single function printers have given way to the new breed of networked multifunction peripherals (MFPs). With print, fax, copy and advanced scanning capabilities, these devices have evolved to become sophisticated document capture and processing hubs with multiple user access points and multiple hacker options.

While they have undoubtedly brought convenience and enhanced user productivity to the workplace, they also pose security risks. They have built in network connectivity, along with hard disk and memory storage, MFPs are susceptible to many of the same security vulnerabilities as any other networked device.

Then a move to a centralised MFP environment means more users are sharing devices.  Without controls, documents can be collected by unauthorised users – either accidentally or maliciously. Similarly, confidential or sensitive documents can be routed in seconds to unauthorised recipients, through scan to email, scan to file and scan to cloud storage functionality. Further controls are required as employees print more and more direct from mobile devices.

Yet many enterprises are not taking heed. Quocirca’s study revealed that just 22% place a high priority on securing their print infrastructure. While financial and professional services sector consider print security a much higher priority, counterparts in the retail, manufacturing and the public sectors lag way behind. Such complacency is misplaced. Overall 63% admitted they have experienced a print-related data breach. And an astounding 90% of public sector respondents admit to one or more paper-based data breaches.

Print environments are often a complex and diverse mix of products and technologies, further complicating the task of understanding what is being printed, scanned and copied where and by whom. Enterprises should use centralised print management tools to monitor and track all MFP related usage. This can either be handled in-house or through an MPS provider.

With MFPs increasingly becoming a component of document distribution, storage and management, organisations need to manage MFP security in the same way as the rest of the IT infrastructure. By using the appropriate level of security for their business needs, an organisation can ensure that it’s most valuable asset–corporate data–is protected.

For more information or assistance in developing your print security contact ITQ 01635 874848 or look up http://www.imagethroughquality.com/audit-and-consultancy.html


 

Simplify your school or college data collection and sharing with UNIform

Simplify your admission process by reducing the amount of paper moving around your educational establishment. Choose UNIform for your organisation for a tailored solution and service.

Do you collect data from multiple sources, then integrate it with your in-house systems or export data to external applications and databases? You may need to create reports, communicate with people on the data base, invoice on a regular basis and more.

Wellington College

Wellington College

ITQ UNIform is a web based data and forms solution that was initially designed in partnership with Wellington College (one of the world’s top co – educational boarding schools)but is not only suitable for schools and colleges but for any business transferring, merging and sending data.

  • Make it easier for your clients to access the forms they need, online, in the cloud and from any computer or mobile device.
  • Segment data and create customised workflows to get data to the correct person or location.
  • Analyse data and report on the progress of the admission or other process
  • Export data to external applications and databases.

teaching assist2To introduce such a system it would now seem obvious to use the web for collecting and sending out data. If this constant stream of information happens in your business ITQ’s web based system – UNIform will:

 

1. Increase your efficiency

2. Simplify your business process

3. Reduce costs

4. Help your ‘green’ credentials

 

Clients can access the forms or information they need; online, in the cloud or from any computer or mobile device. UNIform will allow you to segment data and create customised workflows to get data to the correct person or location. Also analyse data and report on the data progress

What is UNIform and what does it do?

ITQ UNIform is a web based data and forms solution that was initially designed in partnership with Wellington College to help manage and reduce the forms they used in the school’s admission process. It allows users to sign in to a web portal and complete all the forms (previously; up to 28 sent and returned by post per student)and this had to be completed for each student before they enrol.

The simple to use interface and guided process makes it easy for parents to glide through all the required documents and submit them. UNIform can be completely customised for you and any business or organisation, to create workflows to manage, segment and routing data, to the appropriate administrator for processing. Processed data can then be analysed and exported to an existing document management system, database or an electronic folder structure.

What makes UNIform unique, is its flexibility in that it can be tailored to each individual requirement in terms of presentation and output options, Wellington College parents are located all around the world. The presentation of the admissions portal was crucial, it needed to look corporate and professional, but more importantly the functionality and the user experience had to be without question a flawless experience.

ITQ UNform

Tel:0865 874848

email:info@imagethroughqulity.com

Teaching Assistant® Award

KYOteaching assist2CERA Document Solutions America, Inc. announced that its business application Teaching Assistant® has been honoured with a 2017 Pick award as “Outstanding Education Market Solution” from the analysts at Buyers Lab International (BLI), and has received its prestigious Gold Tested Solution rating.

BLI’s analysts were impressed with Teaching Assistant’s ease-of-use and wide range of analytical tools, calling it an affordable solution for any school looking to assess student performance more efficiently.

To allow teachers more time to focus on their students and administrators more time for other tasks, KYOCERA developed Teaching Assistant, a business application powered by HyPAS. Continue reading

Bringing Legal Services Up To Date

Legal Services Act 2007

legal1The legal industry is going through a period of intense transformation, with profit margins under ever-increasing pressure from clients, competitors and legislators. The Legal Services Act is driving the creation of new entrants and services into the market, with big brands such as the AA, the Co-operative Group and BT now able to own and run legal companies for the first time.

The legal system in England & Wales hadn’t changed for 300 years, the Legal Services Act 2007 introduced a new level of competition within the legal services industry that will increase and result in wider access to justice. With new entrants to the market, the changes will also provide wider access to a commercial environment that is more accustomed to developing cost-effective legal services.

Unique Requirements

The legal profession has specialist workflows, a dependency on paper and unique information processes, which makes its needs very specific. Firms are obliged to keep documents for certain periods of time and are beholden to strict regulations around data protection and storage.

Failure to correctly manage data can lead to heavy fines for non-compliance, reputational loss and legal action from clients. New European data protection laws introduced in March 2015 mean that companies found in breach of users’ personal data rights will also risk heavy fines.

However, by allowing new powerful entrants to the market smaller high-street law firms will be exposed to competition that is already well established with greater capabilities and existing retail presence. It seems that outdated and outmoded business practices will be squeezed out by the entry of new providers, and so traditional firms may use the Act as a catalyst for change to the way they operate.

legal5An obvious sign of change will be the disappearance of clerks wheeling in barrow loads of papers; all documents will be available, on computer through the Digital Case System, to all members of the court. The present, numerous, bundles of documents will be replaced by a single electronic bundle that can be displayed on a large screen in court. The government is pushing these changes by investing £700+ million in the digital system and judges are encouraging documents to be presented in digital form.

It, therefore, follows that both new providers and traditional firms will have to be prepared to present their documentation in the way that will be expected. This will mean having the right systems and equipment to digitise potentially large volumes of documents.

Archiving

Archiving of documents is already a common office function indexing, archiving and ready access to information is a key requirement but it is not unusual for firms to encounter problems with hard copy document storage & retrieval. Many solicitors will be familiar with a story of a missing paper file, the content of which is key to the matter in hand and the implications of non-accessibility are serious.

Large firms may have the scale, volume of work and profitability to create their own technology-led solution to their file archiving requirements. However, many smaller firms continue to rely on the conventional storage and retrieval services that were created before the technology and digital revolution took place The actual cost of these archives is often not fully appreciated, both in terms of physical office space or the resource spent filing, searching for and retrieving documents. Physical archives are also at greater risk of being destroyed or damaged. To move these smaller firms on may require guidance in order to take advantage of modern technology giving them access to the same functionality, efficiency and cost savings of larger firms.

Paper-Free?

Whilst a paperless society is unlikely ever to exist the current initiative will boost the uptake and acceptance of digital documents and firms need to be ready; either with systems to incorporate documents produced digitally or from scanned originals to then create ‘digital bundles’ to present in court.

legal2For more general applications within a legal practice, whatever the reason for requiring the data, instant access to the information and knowledge contained within a file would be an ideal requirement for many firms. Not only would this save time and minimise risk but it would also reduce costs, increase profitability and allow a more efficient service to clients. The latter being an important differentiator in competitive times.


Saving money 

The digital age now allows scanning and imaging of files within the firm with the latest equipment and software. Whilst all the options available can seem daunting, with right advice leading to the right solution many tasks can be simplified and automated.

A digital system will mean you need not be subjected to cost of on-site or, worse, off-site storage with the ongoing retrieval costs.  You will no longer have to wait for files to be collected and sent back to your offices. Even when the boxes of hard copy data are located and delivered back to the office someone still has to go through the box, searching  files and papers to find the required, relevant piece of information.  This compared to the touch of a button illustrates the potential for massive time and cost savings and data security.
Final Note

Many companies that have made the switch to digitisation still believe they are legally bound to archive hard copies when many regulators accept electronic records that are created and stored in-house. These records will also be legally admissible in court if scanned to British Standard BS10008:2008. Firms that keep paper copies ‘just in case’, need to be aware that keeping records beyond the legal requirement is not compliant with the Data Protection Act and exposes their businesses to legal liability.

Here to Help

With a range of multi-functional printers, printers, scanners and various software solutions ITQ have the flexible solutions and the knowledge and experience to help you determine your digital document pathway. Helping you streamline your business taking account of legislation and British Standards whilst making your firm more efficient and saving you money, to find out how ITQ can be of assistance please contact us on 01635 874848 or check out the web.

BIG POWER NOW COMES IN A SMALLER SIZE

do more with A4
If you have been researching information about new copiers, printers or MFPs you will know there are two main options; A3 or A4. These terms refer to the paper sizes the machine is designed to handle and also generally the larger machines are also recommended for higher volumes and have offered a wider range of options.

The new IT406ci range from ITQ are the first MFPs to combine the high volume capacities and advanced paper handling options of larger devices with the easy installation, smaller footprint and flexibility of a compact MFP

When looking into new printers or MFPs, which one is right for your office depends mainly on the paper sizes you will be printing, copying and scanning. However there are a few other things to be aware of before making a decision.

Paper Sizes A3 VS A4

Many offices use only A4 sized paper. However some offices use the larger A3 size for engineering documents, making booklets, menus, and design layouts. A3 size paper is the same size as two A4 sized pages put together. This makes booklet making easy by simply folding the paper in half.

Also because of the large size it is useful for enlarging engineering diagrams to a readable size. A3 is also great for printing large spreadsheets on. It’s much easier to read a spreadsheet printed on A3 sized paper than reducing the font to fit on A4 sized paper.

The Size Difference Between A3 and A4 machines

Since an A4 machine is designed to work with smaller paper sizes it has smaller internal components. This allows for a more compact design which obviously results in a machine that takes up less space than the larger A3 machine.

On the other hand, an A3 machine is designed to work with the larger sized paper and generally in the past has had larger more durable internal components.

Available Options on A3 and A4 machines

In the past the smaller and lighter A4 machines generally had only light duty options available. For example, if the machine has a stapler option it may be limited to stapling only 20 pages at a time and probably no large capacity tray, folder, 4-hole punch, or finisher available.

This meant that if you required equipment with any of these options then you would likely have needed a full size A3 machine to handle these tasks, even if you only require A4 paper size.

Cost difference between A3 and A4 machines

In the past larger more robustly designed A3 machines will have cost more than the A4 machines not only because of their larger frames but also higher yielding internal components cost more.

Before the IT406ci range the monthly printing/copying volume was the key to determining which machine is most cost effective for your office. Up to 1000-4000 pages a month an A4 machine will usually be the most cost effective. Above that monthly volume an A3 machine was the only option because of its durability. Now the new IT406ci range has the durability and options available for higher volumes when only A4 is required.

 ITQ High Volume A4 Range

Three new colour multifunctional copier/printers have been launched; the IT306ci (32ppm), IT356ci (35ppm) and TASKalfa 406ci (42ppm).

These machines provide the speed, durability and options for a new segment of the copier/printer market, they are all A4 paper size but offer the same features as ITQ’s A3 machines

“Customers want the high speed, high paper capacity and all the options of full size office MFPS but without the cost of A3 which they rarely if ever use.” says Graham Varndell MD at ITQ.

Contact ITQ

A Look Back to the Future

A pushy hard sell? That’s so 2000! This humorous take on the old way of selling had folks at a recent Kyocera conference nodding and laughing. The skit perfectly portrays the old mentality of “feeds and speeds” selling in stark contrast to ITQ’s current Total Document Solutions approach. Take a look!

It’s two years later and our friendly Kyocera dealer and certified Total Document Solutions specialist Jerry is on the golf course with his favourite client John, who is facing a tricky merger. It’s a classic dealer/client encounter, presented with a smile. Spoiler alert: thanks to his Total Document Solution training from Kyocera, Jerry hits a hole in one.
Thanks to Kyocera Document Solutions for sharing this.
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To check out the future telephone 01635 874848, or web
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UNIform – From big paper to big data

The change of focus from paper to data should not start with reducing the paper but on how the data can be collected and used across multiple applications.  Collecting data without paper will follow naturally and make the data intelligent in that it connects to your applications and databases. This type of approach to business process is crucial and the adoption of this focus on data will make moving from paper to data a much easier transition. Remember, the easy spaper_to_datatarting point is to consider how to collect the data, the next step is how to use the data and the final process how to manage the process, not a thought about paper.

ITQ were approached by Wellington College (one of the world’s top coeducational boarding schools) with a scenario that fitted this thought process perfectly. Wellington College wanted to manage better and reduce the forms used in the school’s admission process. Previously the process involved the College sending out a pack (by courier) of 28 forms that had be completed by the parents, data was repeated on many of the forms. ITQ’s answer was UNIform a web based data and forms solution designed in partnership with the College.

Parents can now sign in to UNIform’s web portal and complete all the forms, automatically replicating data where required. Wellington College parents are located all over the world and the presentation and user experience of the admissions portal was crucial to the reputation of the College.

Data is now collected easier, the parents only enter data once and can come and go to the site as often as they need as they collect the potential students details. There are no bulky packages to send and return but the paper did not figure in the solution, it was all about the data.

But what makes UNIform unique is its flexibility in that it can be tailored to individual requirement in terms of presentation, collecting data and output options. The flexibility means UNIform can be completely customised for any business or organisation, not just educational; to create workflows, to manage data, to segment and route data to the appropriate administrator for processing. Processed data can then be analysed and exported to an existing document management system, database or electronic folder structure.

This bold example of forward thinking shows how you can move from paper to data, removing data entry, improving the customer experience and creating the ‘paper light’ office.

For more information visit our web site or,

Download a brochure UNIform