More than 50% of workers who left their roles say they took confidential company information with them, according to research from security firm Symantec.
Around 59% of ex-employees that either resigned or lost their jobs in 2008 took email lists, employee records or customer information including contact lists, the report says.
The most popular methods of stealing the information was via a CD or DVD, with USB devices and personal email coming second and third respectively. The survey also finds that 82% of respondents said their former employers did not perform an audit or review of documents after they left their jobs, and they could access data on personal networks even after leaving.
But Larry Ponemon, chairman of the Ponemon Institute, told Itnews.com.au that businesses can prevent such behaviour if they put clear policies in place such as controls on data access, and better communication with employees.
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“The survey’s findings should sound the alarm across all industries. Your sensitive data is walking out the door with your employees,” he said. “Even if layoffs are not imminent, companies need to be more aware of who has access to sensitive business information.”