IT experts admit to carelessness despite increased data loss concerns
19th December 2011
Recent survey reveals a third of IT professionals have lost unencrypted portable storage devices despite believing data loss to be a 'serious and growing' concern.
Nearly a third (32.2%) of IT professionals surveyed in a recent poll admitted to losing portable storage devices containing either corporate or personal information. The survey of 512 respondents carried out at four separate information technology and security events in the UK*, also found over half (57%) of respondents confessed to carrying unencrypted data on USB sticks, portable hard drives and optical media, despite 98.6% acknowledging data loss to be a 'serious and growing' concern.
The survey, conducted by a leading specialist in portable storage and digital encryption iStorage, also revealed nearly all of the respondents thought using encrypted portable hard drives would be 'preferable' to unprotected devices for daily use. iStorage's survey coincided with a number of organisations being found guilty by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) of breaching the Data Protection Act following the loss of unencrypted USB flash drives**.
Key findings from survey of 512 IT professionals:
- 57.5% admitted the data they carried was not encrypted
- 32.2% have lost a portable device containing personal and/or company data
- 98.6% believed data loss to be a serious and/or growing concern
- 96.3% felt encrypted hard drives are preferable to unprotected drives for daily use
John Michael, Managing Director of iStorage, said: "The survey's results are disappointing and alarming at the same time because our respondents should be setting a better example. Despite nearly all of the IT experts we questioned acknowledging data loss to be a serious and growing concern it seems many are not connecting that to their own data security procedures, with nearly a third admitting to losing a portable device containing confidential data. This is putting themselves and their organisations at risk."
iStorage recently released datashur, the world's most secure, robust and affordable USB flash drive. datashur combines military grade AES 256-bit hardware encryption using a SHA-256 hashing cryptographic algorithm, an alphanumeric button-based keypad to input a 7-15 digit PIN code plus tamper resistant circuitry, as part of wider digital and physical security measures. datashur is available in three different capacities of 4GB, 8GB and 16GB at the affordable prices of £39, £59 and £79 (ex. VAT) respectively.
datashur can also be configured with independent User and Admin PINs, making it ideal for corporate and government use. If the user forgets the PIN, the drive can be unlocked using the Admin PIN which will then clear the old User PIN and allow the user to set a new one. It also includes a drive reset feature which clears all PINs and data, and creates a new randomly generated encryption key to enable the drive to be reset and reused as and when required as many times as necessary.
Notes to the editor:
*The iStorage survey was conducted at four exhibitions including Infosecurity Europe 2011, IP Expo 2011, 360 IT and SmartGov Live.
**Further examples of UK organisations losing unencrypted USB flash drives are available at www.ico.gov.uk.
The datashur® from iStorage brings an holistic approach to portable data security, with a rechargeable battery powering its onboard alphanumeric keypad plus AES 256-bit encryption.