It was a gambit that didn't go down well in a room full of cynical journalists.

This was followed by a pitch on why HP believes it is one of the most forward-thinking vendors, able to deliver complete security, now and in the future.

Giving anecdotal examples of where his wife fails to update her mobile phone's firmware, and why this is bad, Lazaridis jumped to computers, claiming “no one really knows if their PC is secure”.

Lazaridis pivoted to the internet of things, saying we live now live in a “hyper-connected” world, one where £357 billion is lost to cyber-crime, 160 "large" data breaches happened in 2016, and one where cyber-security must be a disruptive force to challenge these problems.

Lazaridis then reminded us that printers are IoT devices, and they are “scary,” and went on to question why we aren't putting more effort into securing printers. Which is actually a great question.

To illustrate this point, HP brought in Mr Robot star Christian Slater to drive home – via a short, glossy film – the image of how easy it is to infiltrate the average corporate printer. Cue ominous music and dimly lit shots of a man in a hoodie bashing away at a keyboard. “Scary”.

HP appeared to be going for the hardsell of its new "secure" printer, which made it seem almost behind in its thinking, as it lacked the focus to be able to stop wanting to “scare” its audience – did we mention it's “scary”? –  with glossy promotional films, and talks by reformed hacker-turned-pentester MafiaBoy, rather than talk about the interesting information it knows from 20 years plus of being in the technology business.

Case in point, HP's CTO Shane Wall, spoke lots about HP innovating, but no one in the room came away wiser as to what they are actually doing, and how HP is going to help protect the world with these innovations.

The firm says around the world, only two percent of enterprise printers are properly secured. That's a shocking indictment of the attention printers get from corporates, despite their advanced networking capabilities which make them a valid target for any hacker who wants to get into your average network.

But in the end, the audience were no wiser as to how HP plans to change that. Scary.


*Note: The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of SC Media or Haymarket Media.