Managed Print Services Are Not All the Same

By: Jay Brown
August 26, 2022

Demand for managed print services has skyrocketed in recent years as more organizations find out just how much time and money an excellent Managed Print Services (MPS) provider can save them.

If you already have an MPS provider, well done! You’ve taken an important step towards making your organization more efficient and saving up to 30% on print costs. But is that where your benefits end? To put a finer point on it, has your provider evolved its services to deliver more than just toner and maintenance to meet evolving cyber threats? When was the last time you looked over your Service Level Agreements (SLAs) with your security hat on to see what is or is not being managed for you?

With rapidly escalating cybersecurity concerns, status quo MPS is no longer enough.

What's the Big Deal With Print Security?

Printers fall into a category of devices that have lots of names: “non-traditional endpoints,” “IoT devices,” or even just “other.” In many organizations, these “other” devices are less likely to be secured. They can be highly vulnerable, and unfortunately, cybercriminals know it.

Print security has been problematic for some time, but it has only become a hot topic in the last five years, which is somewhat surprising. After all, your printer is a smart device that’s connected to your network — just like a laptop or a tablet. It can be a gateway to your entire network. Block and tackle cybersecurity on all endpoints is critical to the successful mitigation of cyber risk — things like patching, hardening, and lifecycle management for every device, every time. Without proper care, printers are low-hanging fruit for hackers.

Don’t believe me? Check out Vulnerabilities found in 250 HP printer models (March 23, 2022), Critical Wormable Security Flaw Found (Nov 30, 2022), Printjack, Ripple20,  Name:Wreck, and the infamous PrintNightmare of 2021.

Print security issues can and should be cause for concern, but fortunately, securing your printers needn’t be costly or difficult.

Print Security Services We Include That Others Typically Don't

At Marco, we don’t wait for our clients to request proper cyber hygiene. Cybersecurity is simply part of our print solutions, at no additional cost for both current and future clients. We are proud of this commitment to your information security and hope others will follow suit.

For devices that are set up or disposed of through a facility owned and operated by Marco (not dropship devices), standard offerings now include:

  • Access to our dedicated print security team
  • Secure passwords at setup that are unique to each client
  • Multi-pass data overwrite of HDDs and NVRAM clearing
  • Complimentary print security assessment
  • Dedicated SOC Type 2 report for our MPS offering
  • Auxiliary uplift services

It’s quite the list, but we firmly believe that these services should be the new industry standard. Let’s examine each of these in more detail, and why they’re necessary for any organization, large or small, that wants to protect its data.

Dedicated Print Security Team

When we say we have a dedicated print security team, that’s exactly what we mean.  This team watches for evolving print security issues so we can make sure we are giving our clients the very best service. Most MPS providers simply aren’t large enough to have a team that only has one job. But considering that cybersecurity threats can change from week to week (if not day to day), a dedicated team is the only way to guarantee that our recommendations will keep you one step ahead of cybercriminals, not three years behind.

Secure Passwords

Are you 100% confident that none of the printers in your fleet are still using the default administrator passwords? Even among IT professionals, 40% admit to not changing them. This single oversight can leave your network wide open to a variety of threats, and if you use active directory accounts for scan-to-email or file-share, it’s critical you fix this immediately.

Marco updates these default passwords to something that is unique for every client, and we’ve also made sure that our service technicians can access these passwords securely.

Printer Decommissioning Services

It’s rare that MPS providers include this service, but it shouldn’t be. When you decommission a printer or copier, any data remaining on the device might be available to anyone else that can access your old equipment. It sounds obvious, but that obvious mistake cost one healthcare company $1.2 million when it accidentally left sensitive data on copiers returned to the leasing company. At the time, it was the largest HIPAA violation fine to date.  

Your organization may not be regulated by a state or federal agency, but your sensitive data will always be treated securely at Marco. When you decommission a printer with us, your data will be securely overwritten.

Security Assessment Service

Any MPS provider worth their salt will provide an initial print assessment to take stock of your equipment and how it’s being used. However, our dedicated security team is able to offer deeper subject-specific expertise. We believe that every client deserves to also have a thorough security assessment of their current equipment, its vulnerabilities, and your workplace’s printing policies.

Our security assessment includes:

  • Analysis of firmware vulnerabilities
  • Strategic hardware lifecycle reporting (EOS/EOL)
  • Strategic multi-year lifecycle planning guidance

We’ll also identify lots of ways you can save time and money. But if we were to behave like most MPS providers and neglect security, that could end up costing you more time and money than you’d probably like to think about.

Managed Print Services Soc 2

Who loves audits? We do! We ask a third party to perform a special audit — called a SOC 2 report — every year for our managed print and managed IT services teams so our clients can trust that we’re living up to our promises. We are happy to provide a copy of our most recent SOC 2 report upon request.

Uplift Services

Most IT teams struggle to keep up with important security patches and upgrades. Unfortunately, the longer these tasks are postponed, the more time cybercriminals have to take advantage of known vulnerabilities. HP and Lexmark printers are some of the world’s most popular brands, but they also get frequent updates that can be difficult for internal teams to track. This problem is compounded by the fact firmware is isolated to each manufacturer, making some environments nearly impossible to manage.

PrintDefense is Marco’s premier managed firmware security uplift service. It covers complete, accurate, and auditable firmware patching on vulnerable print devices. Further, it is specifically scoped to your organization’s actual risk profile. Together we can take the guesswork out of managing vulnerabilities in your print fleet.

Additional Uplift Services Upon Request

Outside of PrintDefense, there are a number of additional services we offer to meet your organization’s unique needs. For example, if you need to comply with HIPAA regulations, we recommend our HDD/SSD removal services. We do not currently manage the chain of custody during transportation, but our experts are happy to discuss any additional security needs your organization might have, and provide honest and thorough information about what you should consider when selecting your provider.

Why Did We Upgrade Our Service?

There are two reasons why Marco decided to significantly upgrade our MPS offering. The first reason is that we can. By establishing our dedicated print security team, we were able to provide unrivaled expertise and support using Marco’s economies of scale.

The second reason we upgraded our services is that it was the right thing to do as a technology company. States like New York, Colorado, and California have already passed legislation requiring IT companies to protect consumer data, and others are likely to follow. We intend to exceed these requirements proactively across our entire footprint.

It’s always been our goal to offer you the services, the support, and the care you need. No matter what industry or state you’re in, we believe your organization and your end-users deserve it.

What Will These Print Security Services Cost?

That’s the real beauty of it. The reason we’re able to provide you with a dedicated print security team is the same reason we can save you more money: we’re big. We have formed powerful strategic partnerships with the top printer manufacturers in the world. These partnerships have allowed us to provide our clients with highly competitive prices they’re unlikely to find anywhere else, while also providing wider and deeper services in our standard offerings.

But just because we’re big doesn’t mean we’ll treat you like you’re small. Our entire organization is filled with people who are truly passionate about supporting all of our clients as if they were our own teams. Our promise is to make your technology simple, secure, and better. And we’re not happy unless our managed services do precisely that.

If you’re looking for an MPS provider, or if you want to get more security than your current provider is able to offer, our print experts are on-hand to answer your questions and walk you through the next steps.

Meet with a Marco Print Specialist Schedule Appointment

Topics: Managed Print Services