Hard Drives in Copiers: Why Your Personal Information may be at Risk

Photo taken by MMN-o

Copy Machine

Although Copy Machines seem harmless they alone can leek personal information and cause serious trouble. John Juntunen of Digital Copier Security said: “Nearly every copier built since 2002 contains one of these, a hard drive.” Exactly like the hard drive in a computer the hard drive in a copier, saves everything whether it was copied, emailed, or scanned. That means all medical documents, birth certificates or other important/personal documents are stored in your copy machine’s memory and if found in the wrong hands can cause you serious troubles.

How to Defend Your Information

Copiers along with MFDs (Multi-Function Device [such as a device that is a fax machine, photocopier and printer all in one]) store data. Most copiers and MFDs are often found in business settings along with public locations while also being available for the house.

If you have a personal copier there are two real dangers of having your information stolen: 1. Disposing of your copier or MFD without removing or wiping its hard drive. 2. Someone gaining access to your wifi network and to your copier/MFD. If your copier/MFD is old or broken and you are considering throwing it away or selling ALWAYS REMOVE/WIPE THE HARD DRIVE there could potentially be important and private information stored on it. If you need your copier’s/MFD’s hard drive wiped bring it in to South City Computer and we will do it for you!  The second one can only happen if your copier/MFD is connected to your network because it is wireless.  To ensure no one gaining access to your network, set up a secure password (if  not having one already).

If you are going to use a public photocopier, be very cautious about what you are going to copy. There is no telling whether the photocopier deletes all the information stored on it so always be cautious if the information you are photocopying could or could not be harmful information if it was accessible by others.

If you are using a copier at a business not only should the concern of disposing of your copier without wiping the hard drive and via the network but also have a concern of who has actual contact with the copier, for example: coworkers, customers, etc. Although seeming unlikely just by removing the hard drive and using a free software program to scan the hard drive, could download all the files off of it. If your copier is used often throughout your work there could be essential business information leaked if your copy machine’s hard drive is left unprotected.

Click here to view the video by CBS.

If you or your business ever need a copier or MFD hard drive erased, call us at: 314-400-7918

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