75% of UK organizations experienced data loss in the last year, compared with an average of 77% internationally, according to Check Point.
Key findings from the survey show customer information was the most common type of data to be compromised in UK businesses at 52%, in addition to intellectual property (36%), employee information (36%) and consumer information (35%).
With the adoption of Web 2.0 applications and more mobile devices connecting to the network, organizations are challenged with enforcing better data security and IT Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) requirements.
According to the survey of over 450 IT security administrators in the UK, the primary cause for data loss was from lost or stolen equipment, cited by 35% of the UK respondents. Network attacks accounted for a quarter, followed by Web 2.0 and file-sharing applications (22%), and unencrypted USB or media storage devices (19%).
In addition, more than half (53%) of UK respondents surveyed believe their employees have little or no awareness about data security, compliance and policies, with only 19% reporting high awareness of these issues – the third lowest of the five countries surveyed (UK, USA, France, Japan, Australia), highlighting the need for user awareness to be implemented into data protection strategies, as people are often the first line of defense.
“We understand that data security and compliance are often at the top of the CISO’s list. However, if you look at the drivers for data loss, the majority of incidents are unintentional,” said Oded Gonda, vice president of network security products at Check Point Software Technologies. “In order to move data loss from detection to prevention, businesses should consider integrating more user awareness and establish the appropriate processes to gain more visibility and control of information assets.”
“With hundreds of data loss incidents every year – both reported and unreported – it’s no surprise the issues with governance, risk and compliance are being magnified,” said Dr. Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder, Ponemon Institute. “Data security in a modern day world means more than deploying a set of technologies to overcome these challenges. In fact, the lack of employee awareness is a primary cause in data loss incidents and is encouraging more businesses to educate their users about corporate policies in place.”