27% of businesses have lost sensitive data in the last 12 months

Accidental data leaks by staff and software vulnerabilities two of the main causes of data loss, according to new study

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Over a quarter of small, medium, and large businesses have lost sensitive data in the past year due to internal IT threats and a lack of cyber security, a new study by security specialist Kaspersky Lab reports.

Surveying IT professionals across the globe from 2011 to 2014, the study found that the most common cause of data loss was down to accidental leaks by staff when sharing data with 22% of all businesses having lost data due to negligent data sharing.

Software vulnerabilities was also a widely reported IT threat with 20% of businesses having lost sensitive data due to a lack of digital security on their software systems.

Other internal threats reported to have led to data loss incidents included misplaced mobile devices, intentional data leaks from employees, and security failures by a third-party supplier.

Businesses within the utilities and energy industry were the most likely to have suffered data losses with 40% of firms within the sector having encountered software vulnerabilities. The telecom sector also reported a high rate of software vulnerabilities at 35%.

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