Posted by: Jamie (IT Director) 12/8/2010 at 8:27am
A Great article has surfaced on the web regarding MFP security and hard drives.. give it a read (especially if you saw the CBS special!) Read the full article, or read just the important parts below...
Is Your Multifunction Printer Spilling Your Secrets?
Recently the press had a field day with a CBS news report about how digital copiers can become a repository of your deepest and darkest secrets. The story, which is still reverberating in the legal sector, pointed out that digital copiers contain hard drives that store an image of every document copied, scanned, printed or emailed through the machine.
It's true, many multifunction printers operating in large enterprises do feature hard drives, as do many consumer multifunction printers. But even if your printer does include a hard drive, it's not storing information the same way the hard drive on your computer is storing and capturing data.
When an MFP receives print requests, it stores those requests as print jobs in a queue. If the number and size of the jobs is more than the amount of physical RAM in the printer, the printer will temporarily store the jobs on an internal hard disk before returning them to RAM and printing them. (If the printer does not feature a hard disk, it will store all print jobs in RAM.)
For real security-minded (read: paranoid) professionals, don't waste time overwriting the data on a printer that has reached its end of life. Simply remove the drive and destroy the disk platter.