What do the following have in common?
- Data relating to approximately 600 maternity patients and names and dates of birth of 30 children on an unencrypted memory stick lost.
- Missing memory stick from a nursery contained 80 childrens’ contact details and dates of birth
- Lost memory stick contained personal details of 1,075 young school children
- Memory stick with 1,500 pediatric patients’ information missing
- An employee for a Nuclear Regulatory Organization lost an unencrypted USB memory stick containing a nuclear plant safety assessment.
Answer: Storing sensitive information on an unencrypted USB memory device. The other thing they have in common is, they’ve all happened in the last month.
How big is the problem? 70% of respondents in a study of security professionals conducted by the Ponemon Institute say they are absolutely certain (47%) or believe it was most likely (23%) that a data breach was caused by sensitive or confidential information being lost on an unencrypted USB drive.
Face it, they are a simple and easy way to move large amounts of data about. We’re not going to see these handy little devices go away in the near future. But what we can do is to make sure the ones we use are encrypted from day one.
Kingston Storage is making it easy for us all to do the right thing. Their line of DataTraveler Locker+ USB storage devices come with built-in 256-bit AES hardware based encryption. Plug them in, set your password and your data is ready for safe travels. If you lose it and someone tries to guess your password, after the tenth try, all the data on the device is destroyed. With a street price of around $15 for 8GB this 1.3 ounces of prevention can certainly be worth its weight in gold.