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Employees rapped for data risk

Employees rapped for data risk

STING IN THE TAIL: Portable storage devicespose data theft threat Employees around the world are engaging in errant behavio

STING IN THE TAIL: Portable storage devices

pose data theft threat

Employees around the world are engaging in errant behaviour that is threatening the security of both corporate and personal data. The problem, according to research commissioned by Cisco and conducted by Insight Express, is exacerbated by a proliferation of storage and compression technology such as USB drives. For example, all data stored on a hard drive can now be copied to a 64-gigabyte device the size of a pack of gum.

"These devices make it easier for employees, partners, or data thieves to access, move or lose intellectual property or customer data," the report, Data Leakage Worldwide: Common Risks and Mistakes Employees Make, states.

Further, businesses today suffer greater consequences if that data is lost or compromised. Fallout can include damage to company reputation, undermining of brands, and the erosion of competitiveness. Breaches of regulatory requirements for handling sensitive customer data can also negatively impact on customer confidence and incur substantial financial penalty.

Although many companies institute security policies and train employees about the risk of data loss, in the past two years more than 250 million confidential company records were reported lost or stolen in the 10 countries surveyed.

- Mark Phillips

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