Coordinated Business Systems Blog

Did You Know the Common Criteria Certification for Sharp Copiers Creates Uncommonly Good Security

There are three kinds of businesses:

  1. Those who have been hacked and focus on security

  2. Those who haven't been hacked and aren't worried about security

  3. Those who have been hacked but don't know it yet

That said, how often do you think about network and document security?

If you're smart, you'll think about keeping your company information secure all the time.

Many of our customers DO think about network security and have firewall, antivirus, and network monitoring in place.

What about your copiers though?

Did you know that your copier's hard drive stores the documents that you print, scan, and copy through it?

Now think about the information on those documents – routing numbers from checks (complete with signatures!), social security numbers, credit card information, phone numbers . . . you get the idea.

A treasure trove of information that hackers would love to get their hands on.

But, it's just a copier, no one hacks copiers, right?


I've written about the issue of copier security recently:

Today I want to talk about the Common Criteria standard and why it's important for your security.

While companies from most manufacturers offer at least some level of security, manufacturers that have invested in testing their products against Common Criteria security standards (like Sharp) have validated their security approach via independent testing. 

Before going farther, the equipment we carry from Kyocera, OKI, and Lexmark is also secure (don't think otherwise!). 

What Is Common Criteria?


Common Criteria (CC) is an international set of guidelines and specifications developed for evaluating information security products, specifically to ensure they meet an agreed-upon security standard for government deployments. Common Criteria is more formally called "Common Criteria for Information Technology Security Evaluation." 

The list of Sharp MFPs (multi-function printers, we just call them copiers) is a long one. They were certified by an independent laboratory to be compliant with Protection Profile for Hardcopy Devices 1.0.

Exact security features and capabilities will vary by model, so contact one of our experts with questions or concerns. 

Many Sharp copiers have been tested to Evaluation Assurance Level 3, which is the level required for government and military offices.

Common Copier Security Vulnerabilities

Common Core standards are focused on shutting the door on a variety of vulnerabilities and issues that can hit businesses with unsecured copiers:

  • Loss of productivity

  • Loss of access

  • regulatory noncompliance

  • Lawsuits

  • Stolen information

  • Unauthorized use of equipment and network resources

Here's a sample of copier security features and what they protect you against:

  • Secure administrative passwords, IP and MAC address filtering, and user authentication prevent hackers from using copiers to access other machines on the network.

  • Hard drive data encryption and overwrite prevents stored versions of sensitive documents from being stolen.

  • Print retention and user authentication eliminates documents left unattended in paper trays, where anyone can take them.

The Sharp Security Suite offers a mix of capabilities to meet every office's information and network security needs. 

Don't take copier (and printer) security for granted. Secure your devices today!

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