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42% of laptop owners use them both for work and for leisure

October 9, 2012 • Security

According to a survey conducted by O+K Research for Kaspersky Lab, many users see no difference between their personal data and work-related information and often store both on one device. 42% of respondents use laptops provided by an employer or purchased themselves for both work and personal tasks.

Eugene Kaspersky, CEO and co-founder of Kaspersky Lab (image: Kaspersky Lab)

The survey shows that 27% of Apple owners and 25% of other laptop owners use their mobile devices for work. A personal laptop which is not reliably protected from cyber-threats as well as a corporate laptop used for personal purposes could cause a leak of confidential company data. If compromised, a personal device used for work can cause problems across the entire corporate network.

The opposite situation, when a corporate machine is used at home, is less common (15% and 17% respectively) however no less dangerous for the company’s data. The situation with mobile devices is very similar – about one third of respondents use modern smartphones and tablets both for entertainment and for work.

Blackberry users score higher than most – 26% of those who bought this smartphone use it for work while 18% of corporate devices are also used for personal business. The key conclusion is that a whole range of devices – from desktop PCs to mobile phones – is used to store and process corporate information.

So which corporate data is at stake? According to O+K Research, 35% of tablet owners use these devices to store work-related correspondence and 20% of respondents store data needed to remotely access the company’s local network. 19% of smartphone users store passwords to the corporate email server in their smartphone’s memory. For 14%, the data stored on these devices includes logins and passwords for remote access to VPN. Naturally, in case of infection, loss or theft of these devices, this information can become a valuable prize for fraudsters or other troublemakers.

In order to control the use of personal devices for work-related purposes it is necessary to implement a unified corporate security policy and to use appropriate protection solutions.

Users should also think of protecting both personal and corporate data. The basic method of protection is the Internet Security software which reliably blocks malicious objects on the Internet, in email and on mobile devices.

Staff writer

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