Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Save Money by Outsourcing Print Management

Outsourcing Print ManagementPrinting goes on a lot in your average office, however, many company heads do not realize just how much they are spending on office printing. In most offices there is absolutely no effort to manage and control printing costs. The good news is that there are a lot of things out there that an outsourcing company can do to help, like implementing new remote print monitoring technology. This can really help you measure and control printing costs.By reading printer usage data from your printer, you can create a platform for a three step process that can save you a lot of money.

The first step is understanding your current costs. Take some readings of your printer volumes. This information can be used to determine your usage patterns. Then the company you are outsourcing to can look at the supply costs of your vendors to determine your total cost of ownership.

The next step is outsourcing the management of your printers. This will give you immediate cost reductions. Switching to a cost-per-page payment plan which includes printer supplies, help desk support and onsite service will guarantee that you are paying only for the things you actually need. A single invoice will make it easy to manage all of your expenses.

The final step includes your outsourcing company reviewing your quarterly usage patterns. They will then help you discover ways to reduce both your short term and long term costs by updating old technology and exploring electronic document management for your business. If you want to immediately cut costs and operate efficiently, then this is the system you want to use.

Source: Office Product News
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Monday, December 20, 2010

Think Before You Copy

Have you ever wondered what exactly happens to the digital image of the document you are copying after all of your copies have been rendered? Most likely not. At least it seems that the average person who is copying those last minute documents doesn’t think about the copy machine after they are finished using it or question the fate of the digital image that the machine makes in order to produce the copies. Most of use just make our copies and assume that the digital version of our document simply gets relegated to the void.

The truth is, however, almost every copier since 2002 contains its own hard drive, and unless someone takes care to wipe that hard drive, the digital replications of the hard documents being scanned simply get stored. This wouldn’t be a worry if all documents being scanned and copied were trivial ones, containing information useless to most people. We all know, however, that copiers are nearly indiscriminately used to copy trivial and sensitive information alike. This means that when someone copies or scans social security numbers, bank statements, medical records, etc., there is a corresponding digital copy being stored on the hard drive of the copy machine.

Armen Keteyian reported in a CBS news article that John Juntunen, owner of the Sacramento-based company Digital Copier Security, took CBS News to a warehouse in New Jersey in order to see how difficult it would be to purchase a used copier loaded with documents, and Keteyian reports that it is actually pretty easy. For about $300 each Juntunen bought four machines, which he would then pull the hard drives from and scan them using forensic software available to anyone for free. Juntunen found everything from police reports, to pay stubs with names, addresses and social security numbers, and $40,000 in copied checks. Warehouses storing these used copiers are a plentiful wellspring for identity thieves.

This is alarming, or at least it should be. Despite Juntunen’s efforts to raise public awareness and concern for the problem, however, his message is mostly falling on deaf ears. One cannot help but wonder why this is, but I will mostly attribute it to the prosaic and mundane nature of the task of copying documents. After all, why would the hapless secretary who is trying to wrap up her final task on a Friday afternoon (which happens to be making a few copies) give a second thought to the security of the document she is copying, when what is really occupying her mind is what pair of shoes she should wear for girls' night out? The bottom line is, despite how mundane the tasks involving copiers might be, the security threat is very real and not as remote as it might seem. So it is highly prudent that individuals and businesses first of all be mindful of what they are about to copy; if the document contains sensitive information, but it is not absolutely compulsory that it be copied, then simply do not copy it. If the document must be copied, however, one should take measures to ensure that the machine they use is secure. Businesses especially can take such measures and regularly wipe the hard drives of their copiers.

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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Document Security Requires More than Just Shredding

document shreddingEvery single company in the world has documents that they need to process every single day. Whether it be contracts, invoices, receipts, purchase orders, memos or documents containing sensitive information, your company uses documents all the time. But what do you do with these documents once they are no longer of use to you? Well, throwing them away is a horrible idea, at least while they are intact, so most companies shred them. But, is that enough?

Do you take the time that is necessary to ensure that your company's documents are stored, backed up, processed, delivered and destroyed properly? My guess is no. Even with the electronic and digital age we are coming into, paper documents are still widely used. However, you can easily transfer paper documents into digital copies in order to keep them more secure than your average filing cabinet.

In many companies people tend to find document management an inconvenient, as well as expensive, way to reduce productivity. However, this is definitely not the case at all. On the contrary, document management allows your employees to find the information they need faster. Your employees will not have to waste their time sifting through endless file cabinets to find something that they don't even know has been filed properly. A document management system allows your staff to access a document right from their very own desktop, and it also gives you a record of every person that accesses it.

Aside from ease of use, an electronic document management system gives you an easy opportunity to create a quick backup of all of your business information and data. Should something like a natural disaster occur, you will have the ability to regain all of your vital data from an off-site source. So, remember that there are a lot of different things that go into making your documents secure; just make sure you take all the precautions necessary.

Source: Office Product News
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