SureStart

How to keep your printers secure

July 6, 2017

If you know that your business printers could be an entry point for hackers, what can you do to secure them?

In the video above, the security specialists at HP are explaining how they have created some very unique useful strategies on how to keep printers safe from cyber-attacks. HP have approached this from a very alternative way to other printer manufacturers. They are not just protecting the network which printers site on, HP printers also have security in-built from the base hardware upwards, it starts with the printer’s BIOS. SureStart is a technology used to protect the printers BIOS which HP are using. The next level up is the firmware, which is where they are most vulnerable to attack.

A lot of businesses do not realise the computing power which is enclosed within printers themselves, and how easily it can be used to compromise a business network. Whilst IT administrators may be diligent about making sure the business printer firmware is up to date, however they may not be so diligent about where this firmware comes from. The firmware itself maybe a compromised version itself, and without monitoring, it could sit on the network for months, which puts put the business data at risk of theft before anyone realises.

This is where SureStart can help, SureStart checks the BIOS has not been compromised before running a low level check prior loading up the firmware, the firmware is authenticated and this is augmented by run-time intrusion detection. This checks a printers behaviour in contrast to what it normally does through day to day activities. The printer will automatically reboot into safe mode if these checks fail, the SureStart will fix the BIOS, this is the groundwork behind HP’s printer security, along with additional layers of protection and monitoring above.