May 19, 2009
More than one in four U.K. workers take their laptops or other mobile devices to bed and use them before they go to sleep, according to results of a survey released Tuesday.
Credant Technologies, a data protection company, said that, of those who work in bed, 57% do so for two to six hours a week. Most said their companions found the habit "very annoying," and 8% of the offenders admitted spending more time on mobile devices than talking to their partners each night. Credant surveyed 300 workers to uncover patterns of laptop use and security implications. Forty-four percent of the respondents said they store important work documents on their mobile devices and 54% of those devices lacked encryption. One-fifth of respondents acknowledged using wireless networks that aren't secure while they work in bed. "This survey confirms that there is a growing population that is no longer restricted by working hours or confined to the office building itself," Credant VP Michael Callahan said in a statement released Tuesday. "People are mobile and will work anywhere -- even in bed. Therefore, when sensitive and valuable data is being held on these devices and they get lost, it can have pretty detrimental and far-reaching consequences to both the worker and their employer." Eighty-seven percent of respondents favor connecting to the Internet via wireless networks while in bed, according to the survey. Forty-seven percent said they connect to wireless networks in hotels without thinking about security. Credant advised the 4% of respondents who said the last thing they do before going to sleep is to check their e-mail messages and complete work to "take a long, hard look at their gadget-obsessed lives." The company also advised encryption of data stored on mobile devices, the use of strong passwords, awareness of all points of connection, turning off unsecured Bluetooth and Wi-Fi devices, and leaving the laptops behind at bedtime.
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