Security lapses exposed

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management

ISSN: 1741-0401

Article publication date: 1 December 2004



(2004), "Security lapses exposed", International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, Vol. 53 No. 8.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Security lapses exposed

The current access codes and admin rights to the secure intranet of one of Europe’s largest financial services group was purchased on a hard drive over e-bay for just £5 as part of research into the “lifecycle of a lost laptop” by mobile security specialist Pointsec Mobile Technologies.

It claims that it was able to read seven out of ten hard-drives “bought over the internet at auctions for less than the cost of a McDonald’s meal”, all of which had supposedly been wiped clean or reformatted.

One hard-drive purchased by Pointsec contained sensitive information from a financial services group, with pension plans, customer databases, financial information, payroll records, personnel details, login codes, and administration passwords for its secure intranet site.

Peter Larsson, CEO of Pointsec Mobile Technologies, warns: “These findings reinforce how important it is never to let laptops or mobile devices leave the office without being adequately protected with encryption and strong password protection. Encryption and other security measures are vital to ensure that security is not compromised – something as simple as a hard disk drive password can deter the opportunist”.


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