One in five businesses loses data to mobile device theft

California brings in smartphone kill switch legislation to protect handset owners

The results of a new survey from Kaspersky Lab show that the rate of mobile device theft is increasing but over the same period the time taken for IT departments to respond has increased.

Part of this is down to employees taking longer to report mobile loss or theft. Only half report the theft of a mobile device within a day with 38 percent taking up to two days and nine percent waiting between three and five days.

In 2014 25 percent of companies have experienced the theft of a mobile device, compared to only 14 percent in 2011. Most concerning though is that 19 percent of those surveyed say that mobile device theft has resulted in the loss of business data.

The survey of over 3,900 IT security professionals also finds that 52 percent are more concerned about mobile risks than in previous years, 43 percent believe that mobile working patterns pose too much risk, and 42 percent belive that BYOD policies pose increased risk to the business.

"The survey results clearly indicate that IT managers are dealing with multiple security challenges associated with a mobile workforce, and as the use of mobile devices in the workplace continues to grow, employees appear to be less engaged in helping secure mobile platforms," says Mark Bermingham, Kaspersky Lab's Director of Global B2B Product Marketing.

All of this highlights the need for businesses to have a mobile device management policy. Kaspersky also suggests that having an MDM policy managed through the same console as the company’s other endpoint security software can enable IT managers to enforce policies customized to each individual employee, including 'containerization' to keep business information on mobile devices encrypted and separated from personal data on employee-owned devices.

These results are part of Kaspersky's 2014 IT Security Risks Survey which is available on the company’s website where you can also find details of Kaspersky Security for Mobile.

Photo credit: cunaplus / Shutterstock

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