Lib Dems call for ban on memory sticks to carry confidential data

The Liberal Democrats have called for a ban on memory sticks being used to carry sensitive information.

 

Following the loss of a memory stick by Atos Origin which contained details of the government's Gateway website, Liberal Democrat Shadow Secretary for Transport Norman Baker MP said the Government were asking for data from taxpayers that they could not protect.

 

Baker said: “'The Government cannot be trusted with all this information but they collect more and more. I would have thought the basic security step would be to ensure that memory sticks with all this information on simply don't exist.

 

“Why should we trust the government for its database or ID cards system when they simply cannot be trusted with information. These data losses are becoming almost weekly.”

 

Jason Holloway, regional sales manager – Northern Europe for SanDisk, said: “It is important for organisations to realise what levels of acceptable risk they will allow and what reasonable level of security standards.

 

“Most organisations are now taking a pragmatic approach and realise the need to transfer information to another company or between offices because they are on different networks. People will need a memory stick to transfer data from A to B, but the question is what is being transferred?

 

“If the data is confidential then it makes perfect sense to protect it, and hardware encryption is the best you can get. A trail audit will help track on what is on it, where it has been and what was stored.

 

“We are seeing a catalogue of errors that could have been avoided due to a combination of poor tracking and a lack of a decent policy. It is easy to have a straightforward policy as this is a very simple step towards security requirements where everyone is clear to what the right steps are, and that makes staff aware of what the penalties if things go wrong.”

 

 

 

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