Protect your business: take proactive steps to prevent a data leak

data security

Protecting sensitive information is imperative in the digital age, where data is shared across numerous networks and devices. Without careful attention to data security and risk management, can be accessed by unauthorised individuals. While networked access to servers and devices can improve productivity, intellectual property or confidential customer information is vulnerable to deliberate or accidental leaks.

Data leaks can have devastating consequences for a business. In 2014, Barclays Bank was hit by a public scandal when it was revealed that confidential details about approximately 27 000 customers was stolen from the bank’s files. Barclays’ reputation suffered and they faced heavy fines as a penalty for the lapse in security. However not all data leaks are caused by criminals or hackers. Surveys have shown that many incidents occur due to incorrect handling of sensitive information by employees.

Businesses need to take an active stance on data security. Reduced security risks by putting clear policies into place that address how data should be stored and accessed by authorised personnel. The type of devices used can also play a large role in maintaining document and data security. For instance, multifunction printers are used to scan, copy and print documents, and are often linked to a great many users via a network. The device in question should have solid security features in place to maintain security

Sharp multifunction copiers use robust protection features for multi-layered security. Deliberate attacks are deflected with a secure network interface, port-based network protection and IP / MAC address filtering which restricts unauthorised access. Secure sockets layer (SSL) can prevent data leakage due to printing via IPP, when browsing the web and via email. Some copiers, such as the Sharp MX-M1204, are able to automatically encrypt all stored data on the hard drive. Other features include tracking software which tracks use of devices on the network. Accidental access by non-permitted staff is prevented with password controlled access for user authentication, password-protected PDFs that are encrypted once scanned and print runs that require a user PIN. The optional Document Control Function, available through a separate security module, adds copy prevention data to a document which prevents subsequent printing. Finally, when a copier is replaced, a data initialisation feature erases all data on the machine.

All of these features are designed to provide peace of mind. A Sharp multifunction copier can streamline an office’s efficiency while ensuring that no information falls into the wrong hands. Seartec, proud distributor of Sharp, has a number of account executives who can assist you with selecting the right device for your business needs. If your organisation handles a great deal of highly-sensitive material, put staff operating procedures and protocols in place to maintain high levels of security and request information on optional security modules that can provide additional layers of security for your data.

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