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How much does a lost laptop cost your business?

Cost of a stolen laptopDo you know how much a lost or stolen laptop costs your business? For the Advocate Medical Group, an Illinois-based healthcare company, the cost could be enormous.

As the Naked Security blog reports, four laptops stolen from the medical group’s offices in July contained Personally Identifiable Information (PII) from 4 million patients. Now, lawyers have filed a class-action lawsuit representing those patients, who are suing Advocate Medical Group.

The stolen computers were password protected, but the data on their hard disks was not encrypted. If either the disk or the data had been encrypted, we wouldn’t be reading this story in the news.

The danger of a lost laptop is all too real. Someone loses a laptop every minute (literally every minute, according to this study). Researchers have concluded that the average cost of a lost laptop is upwards of $49,000. And the average cost of recovering from a data breach of the kind Advocate Medical Group suffered was about $7.2 million in 2010.

It’s even easier to lose a USB thumb drive, but the data on them is no less valuable. In 2011, Sophos researchers examined 50 USB keys bought at a lost property auction. We found plenty of sensitive data stored on them, but we were disappointed to find that none of them were encrypted.

How about other types of mobile devices, like smartphones? Lost and stolen smartphones could cost U.S. consumers an estimated $30 billion this year, and that doesn’t even include the cost of lost data on those devices.

Now imagine how easy it would be to save those costs by investing a lot less in device and data encryption.

Our industry-leading encryption solutions stop data breaches and make compliance simpler without getting in your way. You can protect the data on your desktops, laptops, removable media, file shares and even in the cloud. And although your encryption is everywhere, you need just one management center for the administration of your Windows PCs, Macs and everything else you’ve got encrypted.

If you’re not encrypting your devices and data everywhere, you could end up in the headlines for all the wrong reasons.


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