Most companies leave data on copier drives

Recent news stories show the dangers copier hard drives pose to information security. What are businesses doing to protect that data?

Not much, according to a recent survey.

Despite the dangers of releasing copiers into the wild after they’ve been used to scan sensitive documents (which we covered previously here), 68% of companies don’t wipe data from copy machines when they’re decommissioned, according to a TechRepublic poll.

Most modern copiers and multifunctional printers have hard drives that store documents before they’re printed out — and can store the images until someone actively deletes them.

That means many copiers are re-sold or re-leased with sensitive documents stored, available to anyone with the means to extract them.

What are your options for wiping that data? Of the businesses polled that do erase copier hard drives, they did so using

  • internal staff
  • a service from the copier dealer or leasing company
  • a built-in feature on the copier, and
  • a third-party service.

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