Did you know that your photocopiers are potential security risks? The fact may surprise you. Think about the office that you work at. You probably have one or two copying machines that everyone shares. Think about what kind of things you copy on the machine. Maybe forms, flyers memos, etc. But what about more sensitive information like client or employee credit card numbers, medical information, resumes, etc. You work hard to shred hard copies of such information, you would equally want to make sure that this information is protected on hard drives.
Photocopiers Have A Hard Drive
Just like your laptop or desktop computer, your copying machine has a hard drive. The way copying machines work is actually very interesting. They work very efficiently by storing one image of whatever you’re copying on its hard drive and makes subsequent copies from that one file. Otherwise, it would have to scan the original image for each copy. You can only imagine how long that would take for some of your projects. This feature is great, it saves you time and money.
Wipe The Hard Drive
Your machine is safe as long as its locked up inside your office. Encryption and overwriting are common methods that more modern methods that digital copiers use to secure data on their hard drives. Overwriting and encryptions change characters so the files can not be reconstructed easily. Using a passcode on the hard drive is also helpful to maintaining device security. However if that hard drive is not wiped before you sell it, you’ll be paying the big bucks once you become a victim of identity theft. Nobody wants to deal with that hassle, especially if you are the one who will answer for it when its your client’s information on the black market. Somebody’s life could be ruined so it is important to wipe the hard drive clean.
This goes for any other device you decide to sell as well such as laptops, phones, etc. Every device is different, but any managed IT service has knowledgeable technicians that can wipe your devices for you. Copies are just extremely important to wipe, mainly because many people have used it, and probably for decades. A managed IT service would be responsible for securing data on the machine.
Precautions When Leasing A Copier
It is even more important to consider this information if you use lease a copier or use a public copier at an office store. Their machines are also subjected to the same security risk, but you have very little control over what happens to the documents on that hard drive, if any. You probably will not be able to wipe a leased machine without permission, and definitely don’t have access to office supply store public copier hard drives. You may want to check with the dealer or store’s policy on how they treat their security on their machines before selling them. Make sure your leasing contract or purchase agreement includes that the company you are leasing the machine from will wipe the hard drive.