10 Steps to Better Secure Your Office Printer

1800 Office SOlutions Team member - Elie Vigile
1800 Team

How to Secure Your Office Printer

Printer security is a critical component of any organization’s IT security strategy. Unfortunately, it is often neglected, overlooked, or considered a low-priority area for security measures. However, failing to secure your printers can create vulnerabilities that hackers or malicious actors may exploit to access sensitive data, potentially leading to costly data breaches.

To safeguard your office print fleet and minimize security risks, it’s essential to prioritize printer security as part of your overall security plan. By taking proactive steps now, you can reduce the chances of falling victim to cyberattacks and mitigate the potential impact on your organization’s operations, resources, and reputation.

Secure Your Office Printer

What is Printer Security?

Printer security is all about protecting your printer and the network it’s on from cyber threats. Printers are like little computers and can be hacked if not secured. This could let someone steal data you’re printing, mess with your printer, or even use it to launch attacks on other devices.

There are steps you can take to secure your printer, like updating its software, using strong passwords, and keeping it on a secure network. By following these practices, you can help keep your information safe and your printer working smoothly.

Here are some key recommendations and security best practices to enhance your printer security:

Use a Firewall

Secure your network printer by implementing robust printer security measures, including utilizing a firewall. A firewall is a fundamental component of safeguarding any computer-enabled device, such as a network printer, against security risks posed by hackers and malicious actors. Ensure that your network printer’s pre-installed firewall is enabled and regularly updated to mitigate vulnerabilities and unauthorized access.

In addition to basic firewall protection, organizations handling sensitive information, such as healthcare, financial, or educational institutions, should consider deploying specialized firewalls tailored for enhanced data protection. These security best practices help prevent breaches and unauthorized access to sensitive print jobs or data stored on the printer’s hard drive.

To further strengthen your printer security, change default passwords and enable secure print features that require authentication before releasing print jobs. Implement encryption protocols to protect sensitive information transmitted between devices and the printer, reducing the risk of data interception by malicious entities.

Regularly updating printer firmware is crucial to address known security vulnerabilities and ensure that the printer’s security features are optimized for current threats. By taking these proactive security measures, you can significantly reduce the likelihood of a security breach and protect your organization’s valuable data.

Turn Off Unnecessary Services

Implement network printer security best practices by turning off unnecessary services on your office printer. Leaving unsecured ports open can create backdoors for hackers to exploit, potentially leading to a security breach within your network. To minimize this risk, only enable essential printing protocols on your network printer and disable any unnecessary services. This proactive approach reduces exposure and enhances your security measures, lowering the likelihood of a data breach through your office printer.

Update Your Printer Firmware

One of the crucial ways to secure your printer is by regularly updating its firmware. This is often an overlooked aspect of printer security but is essential in defending against security threats and preventing unauthorized access to the printer’s functionalities. Firmware updates, released by printer manufacturers, not only add new features but also address known vulnerabilities and patch potential security risks.

By keeping your printer’s firmware up to date, you enhance your business’s information security and ensure that hackers cannot compromise your network through the printer. This proactive measure strengthens your printer security measures and safeguards against malware attacks or unauthorized access attempts to the printer’s data. Conducting regular audits of printer usage and implementing encryption protocols further fortify your printer’s defenses against potential security breaches.

 Implement Pull Printing or Secure Printing

To bolster your printer security strategy, consider implementing pull printing or secure printing methods, which add an extra layer of protection for sensitive documents and enhance overall business security.

Pull printing, also known as Follow Printing, is a two-step process that safeguards against malware and unauthorized access to printed documents. Users initiate print jobs from their devices, sending them to a universal print driver. Subsequently, they must authenticate and “pull” the print job from any pull print-enabled printer, ensuring that only authorized users can access the printed documents.

Another option is user-authenticated secure printing, where users send documents to a designated printer driver and device. Upon physically reaching the designated device, users authenticate themselves via a browser, badge/card reader, or PIN to release the print job securely.

To address printer security comprehensively, adhere to printer security best practices such as changing default passwords to strong ones, regularly updating printer firmware to patch known security holes, and ensuring printers are accessed remotely with strong passwords. Implement network security measures, such as monitoring network traffic and setting up recurring reminders for firmware updates.

Taking a holistic approach to printer security and incorporating additional security features, such as strong passwords, multifactor authentication, and physical security for printers, adds an extra layer of protection. This layered security approach helps protect sensitive data, mitigate security risks, and strengthen your overall security posture across the corporate network and business technology infrastructure.

Regular Audits and Updates

Regular Audits and Updates of Printer

Conducting regular security audits of your printer fleet is crucial to identifying and addressing potential vulnerabilities. These audits should encompass firmware, software, and security patches, ensuring they are up to date to protect against known exploits and vulnerabilities. Regular updates and patches are essential components of a robust security strategy, helping to mitigate risks and enhance the overall security posture of your printing infrastructure.


Enabling encryption protocols for data transmitted between devices and printers is paramount in preventing interception or tampering by unauthorized parties. Utilizing strong encryption standards such as HTTPS or IPsec ensures that data in transit remains secure and confidential. Encryption adds an extra layer of protection to sensitive information, safeguarding it from potential threats and unauthorized access.

Physical Security

Ensuring that printers are located in secure areas accessible only to authorized personnel is critical for maintaining physical security. Implementing measures such as surveillance cameras, access control systems, and secure storage for printer supplies enhances physical security measures. By preventing physical tampering or theft, organizations can protect their printing infrastructure and reduce the risk of unauthorized access or compromise.

Change Your Printer Password

Change Your Printer Password

Ensure the security of your networked printer by changing its default password, especially if it hasn’t been done by a Managed Print Services (MPS) provider during installation. Many printers come with manufacturer-chosen administrator passwords, which are standard and widely known. Changing the default password immediately adds an essential layer of protection, preventing threat actors from exploiting standard default passwords and gaining unauthorized access to your printer and network.

Educate Your Employees

Empower your employees as integral contributors to your office printer security strategy by providing them with education and guidance on secure printing practices. It’s crucial to educate them on the importance of secure printing, how to implement it effectively, and what red flags to watch out for to prevent potential security breaches.

While cybersecurity is a key focus, it’s essential to also address accidental office printer-related security threats. For instance, remind employees about the risks of leaving printed documents with sensitive information unattended at the printer or copier. Additionally, emphasize the importance of not displaying documents containing personal or financial information openly on desks, as this can significantly increase the risk of sensitive data being stolen or compromised.

Add a Secure Shredding Bin Next to Your Printer

Enhance your printer security measures by implementing a secure shredding bin adjacent to your printers. It’s not just about securing your printer; safeguarding your printed documents post-printing is equally crucial. Encouraging the disposal of unused pages or old documents through shredding helps protect sensitive information from unauthorized access.

Ensure that the shredding bins are regularly emptied and that documents are shredded periodically. If managing shredding in-house becomes cumbersome, consider partnering with a reliable third-party secure shredding service to streamline this process and ensure compliance with security standards.

People May Also Ask

How do I secure my HP printer? 

To secure your HP printer, start by updating its firmware regularly to patch security vulnerabilities. Enable password protection for printer settings to prevent unauthorized access. Use a firewall to block suspicious incoming traffic and configure access controls to limit who can connect to the printer. Additionally, consider using encrypted communication protocols such as HTTPS or IPsec to protect data transmissions.

How do I set my printer to secure print?

To set your printer to secure print, access the printer’s settings menu, navigate to the security or authentication section, and enable the secure print option. You may need to create a PIN or password that users must enter at the printer before their documents are printed.

How do I restrict access to my printer on my network?

To restrict access to your printer on your network, configure the printer’s settings to require authentication before allowing connections. Use MAC address filtering to only allow specific devices to communicate with the printer. Additionally, consider setting up a virtual private network (VPN) for secure remote printing access and regularly review and update your network security settings to stay protected against potential threats.


Multifunction printers and copiers are sophisticated devices that interact with various networks, cloud computing platforms, mobile devices, IoT technology, and more. Due to these extensive connections, they are susceptible to vulnerabilities. This is why 1800 Office Solutions employs enterprise-level print security solutions to shield you and your organization from cyber threats and other potential risks, ensuring comprehensive protection against harmful activities.

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