There is a potential information security risk with your office copier or multi-function printer. Whenever documents are copied or sent to your printer, they are likely backed up to a hard drive inside the copier. The hard drive usually isn't a problem until your service comes to change out the equipment. They may or may not have processes in place to wipe those drives and reset the machine. Do you have sensitive information that passes through your office device? The answer is certainly, yes.
Many times, your office equipment provider will remove the used office equipment as a service after your next installation. This equipment can be resold or sent for parts. A third party parts suppliers can take possession of this equipment and remove what parts can be salvaged from the unit to be resold at a later date.
This process creates a potential for this information to be taken. Hospitals, police departments, government institutions, businesses that collect customer data and any other office that contains sensitive information should be concerned about this issue. In the age of security threats, this one should not be overlooked.
This is a potentially a huge legal risk. The Federal Trade Commission released an article addressing this in November of 2010.
There are systems your technology supplier can install that will address this risk proactively. The individual solutions will depend on the device. Consult your business technology provider to ensure your company is protected against this risk.
Federal Trade Commission.
Copier Data Security: A Guide for Businesses. (n.d.). Retrieved February 25, 2015, from http://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/copier-data-security-guide-businesses
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