It’s been well-documented that printers are easy prey for hackers, but let’s not forget that on-premise print servers open up a serious attack vector too. You only have to think back to the Windows PrintNightmare where zero-day flaws in the Windows Print Spooler service created a vulnerability where one compromised desktop PC in a network, could result in an attacker getting domain administration privileges.
It’s a sign of the times that reports of unpatched servers being exploited in the wild are not uncommon. The problem is that when there’s an issue, fixing it often means disabling the ability for users to print. IT admins can find themselves in a difficult situation – as evidenced when Microsoft’s Patch Tuesday very quickly turned into an AdminNightmare. The ‘fix’ broke network printing for many and saw IT forced to disable security or remove the patch to get it working again.
Time to ditch the print server?
Achieving cyber resilience is one of the biggest challenges businesses are facing today and it does raise the question whether managing print via an on-premise server-based infrastructure has had its day. There’s no doubt that keeping on top of print server-related risk means managing a constant stream of security updates and patches, and there’s no guarantee that applying these security fixes will totally eliminate the threat.
When print servers are compromised, businesses face unmitigated financial and reputational risk, as bad actors can potentially gain access to sensitive data including usernames, email addresses or passwords, as well as confidential information that’s being printed. With shoring up security front and center for organizations in all sectors, now is a great time to ditch the print server and migrate print management to the cloud.
The benefits of cloud print management
A serverless print infrastructure removes an expensive security problem from the company network and improves the printing experience for IT administrators and users alike.
Cloud print management solutions don’t require investment in new PCs or upgrades to an existing printer fleet. The directprint.io serverless solution combines the power of cloud administration and local network printing and has been built from the ground up to ensure a smooth, slick and quick roll-out.
directprint.io is a vendor-neutral solution built around a universal print driver which includes advanced finishing options for over 5,000 printer makes and models – making it ideal for customers already operating a multi-vendor fleet. Our universal print driver brings feature parity with OEM drivers, including secure print and native account coding and, importantly, delivers a consistent look and feel across all operating systems and users’ devices.
Make print part of a ZTNA
Cloud-based print management solutions are inherently more secure. The directprint.io SaaS print management platform is built with security in mind, which makes it a natural fit for zero trust strategies.
directprint.io allows for secure user authentication and access control, which means only authorized users can access print devices and data and ensures security and compliance by keeping all print jobs securely on the customer’s local network.
Companies can mix Edge Print and Local Network Printing to find a balance that works for them. Printers remain on a secure network and cannot be exposed to vulnerabilities, and remote print jobs remain within an organization’s already approved Google Workspace or Microsoft Azure infrastructure, ensuring that sensitive business information remains confidential.
Edge Print also gives IT admins fine-grained control over which printers are available for remote printing and provides full visibility of printers outside of the corporate network.
Reduce the IT burden
An on-premise print infrastructure places significant demand on IT resources – think driver management, device deployment and end-user provisioning, centralized management, enforcing rules-based printing, print queue management – the list goes on.
With a cloud-based print infrastructure, all printers are connected to a centralized platform, which allows for easy monitoring and management of all devices from a single pane of glass.
The directprint.io secure serverless platform automates time-intensive tasks, enables the entire print infrastructure to be centrally managed, allows end-users to self-serve and thus reduces the time IT spend troubleshooting printer issues.
Features like Secure Print allow IT admins to apply print policies to groups, individuals, and specific devices for added security in the workplace, while PIN protected printing release features put an end to unwanted data exposure.
directprint.io also offers traceable insights into print behavior, empowering IT leads to spot and deal with potential problems before they have a chance to negatively impact the business.
Isn’t it time you ditched the print server and took print to the cloud? Why not explore the advanced security capabilities directprint.io has to offer and make the most of our free 30-day trial today.
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