Businesses still aren't encrypting their removable devices

Image Credit: Honeywell (Image credit: Image Credit: Honeywell)

Despite the fact that unsecured data could lead to large fines under GDPR, new research has revealed that unencrypted USB devices are still widely used by businesses.

According to new research from the global security firm ESET and Kingston Technology, 55 percent of businesses don't encrypt their removable devices which could potentially leave them exposed to data leaks.

Cybersecurity specialist at ESET, Jake Moore provided further insight on the research's findings, saying:

“With GDPR one-year milestone just a month away, it is interesting to see what businesses are doing differently to protect themselves from cyber security issues and fines. The survey reveals that companies are still not adequately protected from data leaks as this level of unencrypted devices means anyone can access personal data without security clearances. This poses significant security concerns for firms that do not have the processes in place to ensure their data is safe. One of the ways to do this is through the use of encryption. However, the survey reveals that password protection is still widely used amongst businesses even though it lacks in sophistication.”

Unencrypted removable devices

ESET and Kingston surveyed over 500 British business leaders to learn how they are protecting their companies from cyber threats that may be harmful to their organizations.

In addition to revealing that businesses aren't encrypting their removable devices, the survey also found that 62 percent of executives had seen USB devices in unsecured locations such as desks, drawers or exposed office spaces where an employee or visitor could access them without permission.

Companies can better protect their infrastructure and possibly even their reputations by making a small investment into encrypted USB drives.

Anthony Spadafora

After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.