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Ease and frequency of laptop thefts a clear signal to back up data.

Databarracks : 23 January, 2008  (Technical Article)
DataBarracks urges users of mobile computing devices to ensure they have adequate back up procedures in place to reduce the risk of irretrievable data loss in cases of theft.
News of the theft of a Ministry of Defence laptop containing the personal details of 600,000 people interested in joining Britain's armed forces - the latest in a growing number of public sector data losses - is a clear signal that UK organisations need to have an increased focus on data backup, claims Databarracks.

The laptop, which was stolen from the car of a Royal Navy officer in Birmingham, included 'external personal detail', including passport details, National Insurance numbers, family details and medical records.

Peter Groucutt, MD of Databarracks, comments: "Whilst it would be easy to attack the public sector for its security policies due to this and other recent data losses such as the HMRC and DVLA, the commercial sector is also plagued by security slip-ups. Organisations can implement every manual security solution available, but as long as they have employees, there will always be an element of human error that leaves them exposed.

"We recently conducted a survey of UK office workers that uncovered a high level of carelessness among many employees in regards to how they treated organisational data. For example, nearly two-thirds of respondents had accidentally deleted data on their network, whilst nearly seventy per cent admitted to saving more than ten important work files on their PCs alone. Meanwhile, more than three-quarters admitted storing personal content such as photos on their office network or PC, increasing the risk of malware infection."

Groucutt concludes: "More organisations have to start seriously considering secure online backup to protect themselves from unforeseen events, ensuring that they regularly back up their sensitive and critical information to secure offsite locations. As high-profile mistakes such as the MoD's continue to make headlines, it will not be long before customers and constituents alike will demand that the organisations they deal with have a backup strategy firmly in place."
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