In the past 12 months, 4.6 million UK employees have lost work-related as a result of corrupted and malfunctioning personal devices or cloud services.
This is according to research from data recovery firm Kroll Ontrack, which also claims to have found 10 million UK workers use personal devices or cloud services to store employee data.
It believes that without effective data usage guidelines, such a large volume of employees using data in this way poses a “significant” risk to businesses as they may lose control of critical data and open themselves up to inefficiencies and potential legal action through data protection failures.
“It is interesting to see that data loss from personal mobile devices has doubled in two years from 7% in 2012 to 13% this year, reflecting on the proliferation of mobile devices in the corporate environment,” claimed Paul Le Messurier, programme and operations manager at Kroll Ontrack.
“Businesses must begin adapting to the future working environment where employees access files through a number of channels, not all of which will be immediately vetted by the employer.
“IT decision makers must accept this trend will continue and data loss from a wider array of devices will occur as new technology is released to consumers.
“We would urge businesses to protect critical business data through implementing clear data usage, backup and security guidelines,” he added.
However, Kroll Ontrack’s research also claims to have found positive news, including an increase in successful recoveries of work data from 11% to 19% in the past year on laptops.
Data recovery from mobile devices has also increased from 5% to 8%, but this rate decreases when it comes to laptops and tablets – from 20% to 17%.
The firm claims that it is “alarming” that just 43% of employees were able to recover work data from personal devices in the last 12 months, but encouraging because the situation is improving overall.