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Published: April 05, 2017

2017-04-05_13-43-31.jpgUnlike with PCs and software, it’s not well known among IT professionals that office printers make easy targets for hackers. Just like a PCs, they are connected to the network. But unlike PCs, they often have minimal or no restrictions to keep digital spies and thieves at bay.

A recent HP-sponsored Spiceworks survey found 43 percent of IT professionals surveyed in North America, EMEA and Asia Pacific say that they completely ignore printers in their endpoint security practices. Just 16 percent see printers as being at risk for a data breach.

Despite mounting evidence that hackers are increasingly targeting connected hardware instead of software, organizations’ IT departments continue to prioritize OS and application security over the office printer fleet.

HP is looking to change that, which is why it’s committed to engineering the most secure printers in the world. Part of that effort includes sounding the alarm and demonstrating just how important endpoint security is for the modern enterprise.

Today, during a well-attended security influencer event at its offices in London, the company invited tech press and analysts to get the full picture of why printer security is at the forefront of its hardware and software strategy.

At the summit, HP also announced the availability of a new lineup of security-optimized A3 multifunction printers (MFPs), the first in a series of HP’s advances into the A3 market – an opportunity that’s pegged at approximately $55 billion. 

“Despite what people believe, security issues aren’t limited to computers and networks,” said David Ryan, vice president and general manager of HP’s printer business in EMEA. “Today’s printers look a whole lot like PCs, and need to be protected accordingly.”

To underscore the point, HP invited a host of security experts at its two-day London summit to discuss the new A3 MFPs in action and learn about the future of printer security. Reformed hacker Michael Calce, aka “Mafiaboy,” keynoted the forum along with a host of other HP leaders.

Calce is best known for taking down some of the world’s largest e-commerce sites and a major search engine when he was just 15 years old. While he launched his attacks through more conventional paths, Calce now views printers and other Internet-connected devices as one of the most concerning vulnerabilities open to hacking. 

“Printers are everywhere in organizations, and they’re a wide-open prairie where hackers will roam free if companies don’t put the proper obstacles in their way,” says Calce. “That’s why it’s so important for companies like HP to build automated security into next-generation imaging devices.”"Mafiaboy" Michael Calce"Mafiaboy" Michael Calce

The new lineup of A3 devices, which HP said are already shipping to customers, are no exception. In addition to making improvements that both lower the costs of printing and servicing of A3 machines, HP has integrated its own security offerings to create a breakthrough portfolio with the industry’s best device, document and data security.

“Modern printers are fully functioning clients on networks, just like PCs, making them clearly as vulnerable to attack as any connected device,” said Nick Lazaridis, president of HP’s EMEA operations. “We’ve completely reinvented our A3 copiers to better detect and halt attacks that could take down entire networks or companies.”

The refreshed A3 MFPs lineup is set to include some of the world’s most advanced printer security features:   

  • HP SureStart: This feature validates the integrity of BIOS and firmware when a printing and imaging device boots up, then reverts to a safe or “golden copy” mode if it finds the system has been corrupted.
  • Whitelisting: A security measure that ensures only authentic, certified HP code is loaded into memory and reboots the printer if anomalies are detected, returning it to a safe state.
  • Run-Time Intrusion Detection: This safeguard constantly checks for anomalies and automatically reboots the machine if an attack is identified, effectively eliminating the threat.
  • HP JetAdvantage Security Manager: An attribute that automatically ensures the company’s security policies are enforced on printers when they are deployed.

Taken individually, any one of these features could help organizations close a critical gap in their IT security strategies. But by packaging them together, along with a host of other encryption and consulting services, HP is delivering a tightly knit collection of “self-healing” capabilities to automatically safeguard printers and office networks.

The three PageWide platforms and 13 LaserJet platforms in the A3 roster benefit from a new, cloud-based proprietary data analytics agent called HP Smart Device Services (SDS). This monitors, tests and diagnoses service needs across the A3 line, increasing overall efficiency. The HP PageWide Enterprise and Pro platforms also make color printing more affordable while providing best-in-class print speeds.

To learn more about the A3 printers and their capabilities, click hereHP's A3 MFP portfolioHP's A3 MFP portfolio

 

    Enterprise Printing
Published: February 14, 2017

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Consumers are familiar with the nefarious ways that hackers can infiltrate their technology. From viruses and malware to breaches of confidential data and identity theft – they are aware of the security risks that come with connecting to any type of networked device.

What they might not know, however, is that they are more likely to expose themselves and their employers to costly cyberattacks by using IT-issued PCs and printers than they are to have sensitive information stolen by an anonymous hacker.

Aging PCs with third-party security software and unsecured shared printers are particularly vulnerable “blind spots” in enterprise networks, explains Vikrant Batra, Global Head of Marketing for Imaging and Printing at HP.

In fact, just two percent of the hundreds of millions of printers deployed in offices around the world have any type of security measures in place. 

The_Wolf_MovierPoster_LR_tcm245_2402995_tcm245_2403004_tcm245-2402995.jpg“The printers in today’s enterprise environments are as sophisticated as any computing device,” Batra says. “Hackers can pull data from a printer’s hard drive, or get access to your company’s network. And how many times have you walked by the printer and seen printouts with sensitive information just sitting there?”

 

Meet “The Wolf”

One way HP is getting the word out about this major corporate blind spot is by teaming up with actor Christian Slater for a new, branded short film series that debuted today called “The Wolf.” 

Watch the full series hereThe Wolf Starring Christian Slater | HP Studios

“The Wolf” highlights the ease with which skillful cybercriminals can hack corporate networks. In the serialized short films, Slater riffs on his role as a hacker in the award-winning TV series “Mr. Robot” and systematically infiltrates a company entirely through vulnerabilities in unprotected printers and PCs. Starting in the mailroom and moving up to the executive boardroom, he breaches a fictional company’s most sensitive data via an abandoned printout, the printer interface, and even an innocently downloaded gift certificate.

It’s the everyday-ness of these actions that make them so dangerous, Batra notes. 

“We really want to connect with IT decision makers, CIOs, and CISOs and engage this audience with a message that they’ll pay attention to,” he says. “It’s extremely important to have all aspects of the ecosystem secured.”The Wolf Boardroom.jpg

At HP, that means designing industry-leading hardware and software solutions with innovative features across multiple levels of security. In HP’s printers, that includes the Jet Advantage Security Manager, secure boot-up, firmware validation, and run-time code protections while HP’s lineup of business PCs deploys HP Sure Click, HP Sure View, and HP Sure Start Gen3. Together, these built-in protections enable HP to offer the most secure PCs and printers in the world.

HP is also working to continually improve security for what Batra calls the “three Ds” — data, document, and device.

“We want to secure all of them,” he said. “If you have HP security, you are in really good hands.”

To learn more, visit  www.hp.com/TheWolf and follow @HPBusiness.

Published: February 01, 2017

Known for its quirky brand of throwback humor and flawless recreation of the early-’80s public access show, PBS's "Computer Chronicles," viral video series “Computer Show” has become a cult hit.

Created by Adam Lisagor, Roxana Altamirano and Tony Altamirano, “Computer Show” stars TV Host Gary Fabert (played by Rob Baedeker) on a technology talk show set in 1983, the dawn of the personal computing era.

Think: awkward hair and suits, primitive synths and graphics, VHS tapes and no internet. But here's the twist: Guests on this show are in fact, tech luminaries—experts, founders, thinkers, entrepreneurs from 2017.

HP partnered with strategy and marketing innovation agency Giant Spoon and Sandwich Video to create HP's own episode of "Computer Show," featuring employees from present-day HP wowing the two hosts with PageWide technology—the latest in printing innovation. 

In a creative approach to B2B marketing, the show provides the perfect opportunity to talk about how business printing has advanced and how affordable color printing can give companies in all verticals—from education to healthcare to retail— a competitive edge with HP’s PageWide technology.

HP employees Angela Dunn and Val Gabriel gave the hapless hosts a rundown on what makes PageWide technology revolutionary: 

 

 

HP’s PageWide lineup for businesses, which includes Pro and Enterprise MFPs and printers, offer up to 40 percent lower color cost savings per page as compared with color lasers, while printing faster than other color MFPs in their class.

That’s a very long way from the dot-matrix printer shown in the original “Computer Chronicles” video spot on printers, in which hosts of the show, with whirring machine in the background, needed a primer to understand how the printer actually connects to a PC.

  

 

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To learn more about HP's PageWide technology, visit www.hp.com/go/pagewide and follow @HPGraphicArts on Twitter.

Published: December 06, 2016

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Are SMBs printing in-house more than outsourcing? Recent studies indicate this is the case. 

A few years ago, in the aftermath of the recession, Photizo Group, a marketing intelligence group focused on the imaging industry, teamed up with 1105 Media, a provider of integrated business-to-business information and media, to conduct a survey of printer users among US small and medium-size businesses (SMBs).

The purpose of the survey was to determine future SMB print usage needs and in particular if factors other than the economy would lead to “permanent, irreversible changes to the printing market.” The survey included responses from printer users in 386 small and medium businesses. The research focused on changes in printer volume from a similar survey conducted the previous year. Among respondents, while 51 percent said that there was no significant change in year-to-year page volume, 27 percent reported an increase in page volumes over the course of the year. Only 18 percent reported a decrease.

Top factors attributed to businesses whose printing volume increased included:

  • More applications than the previous year
  • Business expanded, same number of workers
  • Bringing print jobs in house

Another indication of the trend among SMBs to move printing in-house comes from IBISWorld. In its “Quick Printing in the U.S. Market Research Report” issued in January this year, the market research organization points out that advances in the computer technology are enabling consumers and small businesses to complete tasks previously serviced by the Quick Printing industry from the convenience of their homes and offices. To this end, new high quality color printing technology is enabling SMBs to produce the sophisticated sales, retail and marketing materials that allow them to differentiate their services and compete against larger players in an increasingly competitive global market. 

As an example, earlier this year, we announced our HP OfficeJet Pro printers that deliver affordable, professional color and big performance in a compact package for small businesses. We also introduced HP LaserJet printers with leading laser performance, print-shop quality color documents as well as best value for black-and-white printing

 

SMBs turn to Managed Print Services to control and reduce office printing costs

Despite continued reliance on print, controlling printing costs continues to be a concern among SMBs. A Quocirca study of SMBs across Europe indicated that cost control is the top print management priority they face, yet they do not have the resources to devote to print management. According to Quocirca, SMBs estimate that on average they spend 15% of their IT budget on printing, but many lack the insight into usage in order to manage print costs. Overall 70% of today’s SMBs do not have the tools to track or monitor printing.

The need for better cost control, along with rising printer security concerns, is driving SMB Managed Print Services (MPS) adoption. In fact, Transparency Market Research forecasts the MPS market to reach nearly $95B billion by 2024, rising from $26B in 2015. And as the desire for mobile printing continues to rise, MPS provides the integrated tracking, reporting and security required for SMBs to better monitor and control printing wherever it originates. 

All indications are that printing will continue to be a major business process and competitive advantage for SMBs. Today’s cost-conscious printers and MPS offerings are enabling forward-looking companies to handle this once outsourced service in-house.

Published: December 05, 2016

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 No company would ever allow a PC to tap into its network without the security software to keep hackers from infiltrating. And yet, the network-connected office printer is often overlooked when it comes to security. In fact, more than a quarter of all significant data breaches reported by IT managers involved printers, according to market research firm IDC.

Recognizing that vulnerability, HP is deploying a suite of new security features and services, along with army of highly-trained cybersecurity experts, to secure networks at the printer level. 

"IT departments don’t think printers are being targeted, but they wouldn’t know it if they were," said Cindy Dwyer, manager, worldwide print security marketing at HP. "A printer, just like a PC, is an endpoint on the network. Hackers can access printers almost easier than PCs because IT has underestimated their vulnerabilities."

HP has redesigned its Secure Managed Print Services (MPS) offering to ensure that corporate print environments are protected from cyberattacks. Companies who subscribe to MPS already benefit from the cost savings and efficiencies of outsourcing the maintenance of their printer fleets to HP or a channel partner. Adding security to that list of benefits just made sense.

“Secure MPS is a natural extension of what we can do to help them as we are servicing and managing their printer fleets,” Dwyer said. “We are infusing security into every aspect of HP MPS.”