Magazine article Law & Order

Sharp High Security Copiers

Magazine article Law & Order

Sharp High Security Copiers

Article excerpt

PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT

The office photocopier has always been a tool for employees or others who want to breach an organization's security, as interlopers could use the copier to make unauthorized duplicates of sensitive documents and then remove them from the premises. This was less of a problem when the agency operating the copier maintained tight control over its documents. Unfortunately, new copier technology has increased efficiency while creating a new conduit for security leaks.

Users of the newest copier/printers might notice that they operate differently than the old variety. Where the older copier would make a separate scanning pass for each copy, newer models scan all of the originals, then start spitting out the copies in the desired order. Even without a mechanical sorter, the operator can get multiple copy sets collated or sorted in the conventional way by pressing the appropriate button.

This is possible because modern digital copiers scan each document once, storing the image to an internal hard drive. The images are then transferred from the hard drive to the printing mechanism in whatever order or quantity the operator desires. This process is much faster and more reliable, as it doesn't require the mechanical scanning mechanism to move across the page for each copy.

The downside of this technology is that the internal hard drive can retain an image of every copy made until it reaches its capacity, making the images available to an intruder who can gain access to the hard drive. A wellequipped spy could switch the internal hard drive with a duplicate, taking the original drive off premises to examine at his leisure. The same machine can be ordered to make copies of all document images preserved on its internal drive, making it possible to obtain copies of documents that were duplicated previously. …

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