Research conducted at Infosecurity Europe 2014 has revealed that 50% of security professionals do not secure data on portable storage devices such as USBs and external hard drives.
This finding comes despite 91% of respondents to the same survey expressing concerns about the potential damage that data loss could bring to their organizations. These statistics have been revealed following a survey of over 500 security professionals conducted by iStorage.
Despite half of respondents admitting to not encrypting data, the survey revealed that 67% were aware that a maximum fine of £500,000 could be imposed on businesses and Government bodies for serious breaches of the Data Protection Act. Under this Act, a breach constitutes failing to keep data secure against unlawful or unauthorized processing, accidental loss or erasure. The other 33% of respondents were aware of fines but believed them to be far less, with the majority understanding the maximum fine to be £250,000.
According to a recent national data survey, the third-biggest source of data breaches in the country is people losing USB keys, laptops, and external hard drives.
Further research states the average cost of a data security breach for companies in the UK ranges from £160,000 to £4.8 million. Along with the issue of financial costs that comes with data loss, reputational damage is also a big factor as it can have serious implications.
“In today’s fast-moving business environment and the era of big data, it is deeply concerning that 50% of security professionals do not encrypt data while on the move,” states John Michael, CEO and Founder of iStorage. “Data loss can have a sizeable negative impact on business productivity, reputation and future revenue. To ensure critical business data remains confidential, it is imperative that businesses take the necessary precautions to guarantee data does not end up in the wrong hands.”