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Identity Theft for Businesses: Mobile Data Breach

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Mobile Data Theft

Technology is the focal point of data breach and workplace identity theft because corporations create, transmit, and store so many pieces of information digitally that it becomes a highly attractive target. This book is not intended to address the complex maze that larger organizations face in protecting their technological and digital assets. Rather, the purpose of this book is to begin to familiarize business employees, executives, and vendors with the various security issues facing them.
The task, then, is to develop a capable team (internal and external) to address these issues. In my experience, the following technology-related issues pose the greatest data-loss threats inside organizations:

  • Laptop Theft: According to the Ponemon Institute, 36 percent of reported breaches are due to a lost or stolen laptop.
  • Mobile Data Theft: Thumb drives, CDs, DVDs, tape backups, smart phones
  • Malware: Software that infects corporate systems, allowing criminals inside these networks
  • Hacking: Breaking into your computer system from the outside, using networks, wireless connections, remote access, and your Internet pipeline
  • Wireless Theft: Wireless connections to the Internet in airports, hotels, cafes, and conferences
  • Insider Theft: When someone in the IT department (or elsewhere) decides to make extra money by selling your data

According to the Ponemon Institute, ‘‘Thirty-six percent of all cases in this year’s study involved lost or stolen laptop computers or other mobile data-bearing devices. Data breaches concerning lost, missing, or stolen laptop computers are more expensive than other incidents. Specifically, in this year’s study, the per-victim cost for a data breach involving a lost or stolen laptop was just under $225, over $30 more than if a laptop or mobile device was not involved.’’ Continue Reading….

The post above is an excerpt from John’s latest book Privacy Means Profit. To learn more and to purchase the book, visit our website www.ThinkLikeASpy.com.

Privacy Means Profit

Prevent Identity Theft and Secure You and Your Bottom Line

This book builds a bridge between good personal privacy habits (protect your wallet, online banking, trash, etc.) with the skills and motivation to protect workplace data (bulletproof your laptop, server, hiring policies, etc.).

In Privacy Means Profit, John Sileo demonstrates how to keep data theft from destroying your bottom line, both personally and professionally. In addition to sharing his gripping tale of losing $300,000 and his business to data breach, John writes about the risks posed by social media, travel theft, workplace identity theft, and how to keep it from happening to you and your business.

Laptop Anti-Theft: 7 Tips for Travelers

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Laptop anti-theft, or protecting your mobile data, is a MUST for corporations and consumers. Almost half of workplace identity theft takes place because of mobile data. And the average value of the data on your laptop can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars to a corporate spy or experienced identity thief. At the higher end of the scale, the value of the 26 million Veteran identities on a laptop lost over a year ago was estimated to be worth more than $100 million. Those are the types of computer security risks that can make your business unprofitable. But there are solutions.

Broken Window Theory: By removing graffiti and repairing broken windows in crime hot-spots throughout New York City, the NYPD was able to drastically reduce the entire city’s overall crime rate (not just the quantity of graffiti and broken windows), including thefts, burglaries, muggings and murders. In other words, certain actions that we take (e.g., focusing on crime hot-spots rather than on every type of crime) can have a disproportionately positive effect on achieving our goal (e.g., lower crime rates). Business translation: you get a far higher return on investment for certain well-planned tactical strikes than you do for far more expensive strategic initiatives.

My point? In the world of workplace identity theft and corporate data breach, laptop computers are the biggest broken window. Not only do laptops account for a disproportionate amount of data theft, but training the organization to properly protect mobile computers has a radiant effect on all other types of identity protection. Good habits in one area breed good habits in others.

Stop the theft of corporate laptops (or personal laptops with corporate data on them) and you have eliminated approximately 50% of the entire data breach problem at a fraction of the security cost.

Laptop theft generally occurs in transit: airports, hotels,  cars, commuter trains, conferences, off-site meetings, vacations, coffee shops, etc. Build laptop anti-theft training into your organizational culture of privacy:

7 Laptop Anti-Theft Tips for Travelers
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