Data loss prevention in print – are you at risk?

Are your print outputs protected?



What is data loss prevention?

Data loss prevention is one of the many practices organizations take to secure information and record management.

The focus on data loss prevention is reflected by the evolution of an organization’s structure. Over the past few years, the function of Head of IT has been split between the roles of Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Chief Information Officer (CIO). It’s the role of the CIO to strategically focus on the information, while the CTO strategically focuses on the technology.

Information is a critical asset of any business. And as organizations become more global and digitally driven, data is increasingly valuable – and increasingly compromised. For some organizations, this can be credit card data or personal information. For others, it’s research, sources of codes or financial information.

Data loss prevention is evaluated through risk checks and addressed through policies, procedures and security measures to lower and limit any breach of information and data. It’s also supported by regulations – the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is an example of this on a global scale. But is it enough?


Data loss and the risk to your organization

The most important and critical risk to every organization is the leaking of business-related, confidential information, which is often not leaked intentionally. Gartner analyst Richard Hunter indicates that “More than 70% of unauthorized access to information systems is committed by employees, as are more than 95% of intrusions that result in significant financial losses.”

However, most of these data breaches are not caused by malicious behavior. Instead, employees are unaware of the confidential nature of the data, the organization lacks an established policy, or employees are unaware of such a policy. As a result, the more systemic controls that can be put in place to prevent data loss prevention, the greater governance organizations have over confidential files.

And while much has been said about multifunction devices exposing an organization’s IT infrastructure to the risk of penetration, this is not the case with Canon multifunction devices which, by default, utilize a secure layer of data encryption.


What solutions can you implement to protect your data?

In the case of multifunction devices, there is an end user interface with information. This may be via a laptop screen or the printing of confidential information left unattended.

The risk of data leak from such interfaces usually relies on the employees dealing with these interfaces. However, can you block a person using a mobile phone to capture an image of confidential data displayed on a screen? No. And here lies a key risk.

To address this gap, Canon has utilized smart data capture and extraction to further increase the security layer of data misuse management. In simple terms, the solution extends existing infrastructure security measures by enabling multifunction devices to:

  1. “Read” the data that is being scanned, printed or copied, and
  2. Check for confidential keywords.

If any of these words are identified, the job will be immediately paused. This will then trigger an approval process, where the CIO within the business has to:

  1. Check the data that is being printed, scanned, copied or emailed from the MFP, and
  2. Approve or disapprove the activity.

Solutions such as Canon’s enable organizations to control and monitor multifunction device usage, ensuring organizational data remains safe when processed on these interfaces.

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