Two thirds of British workers admit they would breach data protection rules

Two thirds of British workers admit they would breach data protection rules

The significance of data protection has become increasingly prominent in the minds of many companies, particularly those looking to accommodate new mobile devices within their infrastructure, whether it be as part of a bring your own device (BYOD) policy or some other approach to flexible and mobile working.

There have been a number of high-profile breaches in recent years, leaving many organisations looking at the best ways of safeguarding their most sensitive corporate information. BYOD and the mobile working practices that come with it are clearly not going to go away anytime soon as they bring with them a number of benefits to worker morale and productivity.

However, there are also risks which need to be successfully navigated, and research from IT firm Daisy Group has suggested that workers themselves may be posing something of a threat to corporate systems.

According to research, two thirds of workers across the UK admit they would not report a serious data protection breach if they thought it would get a colleague in trouble.

The study found a further 13 per cent said they had disabled password protection features on work laptops, mobiles and tablet devices due to finding them an inconvenience.

Even when password protection was implemented, just over a third (36 per cent) said they did not regularly change them, while another 17 per cent admitted their password was simple and would be very easy to guess.

Worryingly, if asked by a third party to email a client or supplier’s personal details outside of the company, just over half (56 per cent) said they wouldn’t, while another 19 per cent said they would check with their boss before doing so.

A further seven per cent said they would send the details without querying the request, thinking no one would mind them doing so.

Cloud specialist, Graham Harris, an expert at business IT and telecoms provider Daisy Group, explained: “As our research identified, human error is one of, if not the most likely source for data security issues, and fear of reprisal is a powerful force. Businesses must be proactive and educate their staff about what data security processes and policies there are, why they exist, what the staff member’s responsibilities are and reassure them about what to do in the event of a problem.”