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Over 50% of Ex-employees Pilfered Confidential Corporate Data

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According to Ponemon Institute’s “Data Loss Risks During Downsizing” January 2009 national study, 59% of U.S. ex-employees stole confidential company data.

The survey covered over 900 participants who were fired, laid-off, or left for another job during 2008.

The type of information made off with included e-mail lists (65%), non-financial business information (45%), and customer information (39%).

79% of those who admitted stealing acknowledged they were disobeying company rules.

“The top reasons given for stealing data include: ‘everyone else is doing it, the information may be useful to me in the future, I was instrumental in creating this information, the company can’t trace the information back to me and the company does not deserve to keep this information.’”

This finding suggests it’s a good idea to take extra precautions with disgruntled employees: “It is very interesting to note that employees who do not trust their former employer to act with integrity and fairness are more likely to take the data. 61% of respondents who were negative about the company took data while only 26% of those with a favorable view took data.”

Confidential data loss can easily equate to a loss of competitiveness for any business. Are you actively taking steps to reduce your security risk?

One of the most important things you can do as a business owner, or in your personal life, is to thoroughly understand who you are dealing with through comprehensive background screening before you open yourself up to excessive risk.

Handwriting analysis is one of the most accurate forms of personality assessment. It identifies the real personality, the one behind the persona, to help you avoid nasty surprises in the future.

Copyright © 2010 Scott Petullo

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