Biggest risk to confidentiality and IP integrity revealed
Written by staff reporter
Research into information management and security practices in the mid-market suggests that business leaders are the worst offenders when it comes to mismanaging sensitive business information.
Over half (57%) the CxOs/MDs questioned say they have left business-sensitive or confidential information on the printer for all to see: just under half (49%) have used a personal email account to send sensitive business information.
The research, commissioned by Iron Mountain, also suggests some 40% have sent information over an insecure wireless network; 43% have disposed of documents in a potentially insecure bin, and 39% admit to having lost business information in a public place. In comparison to employees across all levels of mid-market companies, CxOs topped the list of information-management sinners in all of these instances.
When it comes to following processes designed to protect the integrity of information, ensure it is managed securely and remains compliant with company policies and/or legal requirements, one in five (21%) CxOs responding to the Iron Mountain research say the find the processes too complex and look for a workaround. A further one in seven (14%) don’t follow company policies governing information security because they find the policies too complicated, while 6% claim they are completely unaware of any policies in the first place.
The research shows that facilities and office managers come a close second to CxOs in their data handling bad habits, with over half (56%) admitting to taking sensitive or confidential information out of the workplace and 48% having sent such information to the wrong recipient.
At the other end of the scale, administrative staff rate well in comparison, but are still guilty of mismanaging information. Just under a third (29%) have left confidential information on the printer, one in five (21%) admit to having mislaid data or sending it to the wrong person and 15% admit to losing company documents in a public place.
Commenting on the research, commercial director at Iron Mountain, Elizabeth Bramwell, said the research shows that business leaders are bypassing the very protocols designed to keep information secure.
"With the stakes so high, companies need to put the policies and processes in place to support good information governance. On its own this may not be enough: companies must promote behaviours that protect sensitive company information. For many, this will require a cultural shift, with the example set at the very top,” she explained.