HP released a new line of secure business printers, but just how much more secure are they?
by HP recently hosted an event in Beijing for the launch of the products that they do best: new and secure enterprise-grade printers.
Don’t be fooled into thinking that these printers are just the same as any other enterprise printer out in the market. HP’s new printers have been taken to the next level by being the first printers in the world to ever be embedded with their own security system and software that are aimed specifically at protecting them from illicit and dangerous malware. That’s right, you read that right: HP’s new printers are protected by their own personal anti-virus software.
Why so much protection for an end-user device, you ask? We posed that question to HP too, a question that Han Kong Leong, Vice President, Printing Systems, HP Asia Pacific and Japan, was more than happy to answer. Leong said that the reason HP had gone through all this trouble to make their new printers digitally secure was because (believe it or not) an office printer in this day and age isn’t just a communal accessory any longer.
Leong explained that business printers in today’s market are just as complicated as a PC, in the same sense that they have just as many components as a PC. Besides being used to print documents, the modern business printers have CPUs, memory modules, internal memory storage, and can be used wirelessly (through Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connectivity), or connected directly via USB.
To ensure that the printers function properly, HP installed three additional features into the new printers: HP SureStart, HP Secure White Listing, and HP Run-time Intrusion Detection.
To put all these features in relative terms: HP SureStart works pretty much the same way as a PC’s BIOS does. It rectifies the printer’s hardware and components. More specifically, it can easily identify if the toner cartridge being used is a genuine HP consumables, or otherwise. With that said, all toners for HP’s new LaserJet printers come with a special smart chip embedded within them, which will alert consumers to its authenticity when inserted into a printer.
HP Secure White Listing and HP Run-time Intrusion Detection are essentially the anti-virus programs that double-check the source of your document before it prints. Should both the programs deem the source to be riddled with malware and viruses, it can choose to not print the document. In more severe situations, the programs can force the printer to shutdown, reboot and stop functioning until it is manually restarted.
Han Kong Leong, Vice President, Printing Systems, HP Asia Pacific and Japan, and Richard Bailey, Senior Vice President, HP, at the launch event for HP’s new printing solutions.