Monitor Your Home Office Workers Remotely with Managed Print Services

As 2021 dawns, a new era in work has arrived. Remote work is now the norm, and businesses are now putting into place remote monitoring systems such as managed print services to make sure workers are doing their jobs and not wasting resources.

It’s time to look at your spend for 2020 and forecasting for 2021. Part of your new IT budget should incorporate remote monitoring, what with so many people working from home.

How Does Remote Monitoring Work with Printers?

If you have workers who are telecommuting from their home office, but using company printing equipment, you probably want to use remote monitoring. Remote monitoring of printers will ensure that workers are only using printers in an authorized manner, that is, not abusing the printer for non-work activities.

While some businesses do allow employees to use printers for a small allotment of personal use, you don’t want people to go overboard and start printing up hundreds of flyers for their local bingo club.

The remote monitoring software will track printer usage. It can also potentially cap printer usage so people can’t print more than their allotment.

Remote printer monitoring also helps with maintenance. Paper jams, low ink alerts, and open printer doors can be instantly tracked, and a technician sent out if needed.

The Benefits of Remote Monitoring with Managed Print Services in 2021

In 2021, we expect that working from home will remain the norm, even if coronavirus lockdowns are lifted once vaccines are widely adopted. Many experts, including Bill Gates himself, are predicting that lockdowns could last into 2022. For this reason, businesses need to be prepared and have systems in place to support remote workers throughout 2021.

Managed print services can make this happen easily. With a managed print services solution, your entire printer ecosystem – even company printers used at home offices – can be managed remotely and securely. The benefits of remote monitoring include:

Better Security

Printers that are attached to the Internet can be security risks if they aren’t properly configured and administered. Remote printer monitoring can help ensure that printers are safe from hacker intrusion. Document confidentiality can also be ensured through managed services, especially through integration with a document management solution.

Cost Savings

Workers who abuse printer resources can waste company money by using up too much paper and printer ink. Note that not all excessive printer usage may be due to abuse, it could just be poor habits or an overreliance on print when digital files would work just fine. Remote monitoring of printers with managed services can stop the overuse of printers, printer paper, and ink.

Improved Efficiency

Printers that are constantly jamming up or not working properly waste time. Do you want your employees focused on trying to figure out why a printer isn’t working, or would you rather they focus on their main tasks instead? Printers that are properly maintained through managed print services will not work better more consistently. They will break down less frequently, and, if there is an issue, it can be fixed quickly by a certified technician.

Latest Printer Equipment

With managed print services, you are effectively leasing your printers in a full-service package that includes remote monitoring and support. What this means is that you will be able to provide your employees with the best in equipment without spending a bundle constantly buying new machines. This also means that as older printers become worn out (and old printers are also security risks), they can be easily replaced with newer models that provide speed, efficiency, and more security. This is a win/win for you and your time.

Need Help Setting Up Remote Monitoring Managed Services?

With remote work expected to continue throughout 2021 and possibly 2022, it is a good time to get remote monitoring of your printer ecosystem set up. This can happen through Cartridge World’s expert managed print services solutions. We can enable total visibility across your whole print environment and greater ecosystem, even for devices that work at home employees use. We provide ongoing support from brand-certified technicians to make sure devices are always up and running securely. We offer free estimates so you know exactly what your costs will be from month to month, and a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

If you need managed print services in Bettendorf, Iowa; Davenport, Iowa; Moline, Illinois; or Rock Island, Illinois, Cartridge World knows how to set up remote monitoring properly. Contact us today for more information!

Hackers Are Targeting Printers – How to Be Protected from Cyber Attacks

As a business owner, you have enough on your plate without having to deal with a cyberattack by unscrupulous hackers. Cybersecurity is becoming even more important as hacking picks up, much of it directed towards printers.

If you don’t have a cybersecurity plan in place for your printers and networks, then your company could be at risk for a security breach. Fortunately, hackers can be blocked from accessing your systems – if you know what to do or where to get help.

Hacking is most definitely on the rise – and everyone is vulnerable. In June 2020, for example, hackers got access to the systems of the printing company Xerox and threatened to leak stolen files unless a ransom was paid. Xerox is just one of many large companies targeted by ransomware thieves.

The Amazing Cybersecurity Story of 28,000 Printers Being Hijacked by White-Hat Hackers

The best way to illustrate the vulnerability of printers and multifunction printers is to prove it – and this was accomplished in the summer of 2020 by cybersecurity experts at CyberNews.

What did they do? The Cybernews white hat hackers used IoT (Internet of Things) search engines to scan for open printer ports. (White hat hackers are hackers who are using their hacking skills for good.) The team found a whopping 800,000 printers that had Internet-accessible network printing features enabled. This isn’t a guarantee that all these printers were hackable, but the organization calculated that probably 500,000 of them could have been targeted for hacking.

The cyberhacking team then targeted 50,000 printers out of the entire batch. They were able to hijack and print out a PDF document on almost 28,000 unprotected printers.

This is of course a huge problem. While these white hat hackers only used their exploit to print out a warning to the targeted printers, they could have done real damage.

Printing companies like HP and Canon have been working to make their products more secure. For example, HP has been taking aggressive steps to not only educate its printer users about security but to improve the security of its products. Canon has also put resources into amping up cybersecurity, particular for the medical field, which is at high risk for cyberattacks.

How Managed Print Services Can Help Stop Cyberattacks

One of the main problems is that no matter what cybersecurity measures are available on Xerox or HP printers, if you don’t utilize those options properly, your printers could be at risk from hackers. This is why it is helpful to have a cybersecurity expert managing your printing systems. The problem is, a lot of small businesses don’t have the resources to hire a full-time IT administrator who can keep up with all the latest threats from hackers.

This is where managed print services come in. With a managed print services solution, your printers will be taken care of by experts.

One of the most important features of managed print services is visibility. This means that printers are remotely monitored, in a secure fashion, to make sure that everything is functioning properly. Access controls can be put into place to ensure that the right people access the right documents from the right printers.

Access control is very important, because cybersecurity for printers isn’t just about open Internet ports. It’s also possible for hackers to get in via Bluetooth or WiFi.

But beyond that, printers can have sensitive information in their buffers, not to mention the sensitive information that could be on a printed document. With the right access controls in place, you won’t have unauthorized staff members (or anyone else) plucking confidential documents directly off the computer (or pulling the data out of the printer buffer).

For many SMBs, having a qualified tech staff take care of printer security through managed print services can make a huge difference.

Would You Like to Get Started with Managed Print Services?

At Cartridge World, we have extensive expertise in cybersecurity and securing printers and connected systems from hackers. Our managed print services solutions are always tailored to each individual business or organization. We start with a free, no obligation estimate that includes an assessment of your current printer environment. Our certified technicians will expertly install the latest printers and provide preventative maintenance and security checks. We also offer a 100 percent satisfaction guarantee.

If you need managed print services in Bettendorf, Iowa; Davenport, Iowa; Moline, Illinois; or Rock Island, Illinois, Cartridge World knows how to secure your printers from hackers. Contact us today for more information!