More than half of UK public and private sector organisations do not have anti-virus software deployed on laptops.

According to a survey by Check Point of 135 IT managers and senior IT staff, only 41 per cent said they had data encryption solutions deployed on their business laptops, but 72 per cent of respondents reported they had a VPN client deployed.

Also, 50 per cent said they had no plans to upgrade to Windows 7, while 32 per cent plan to upgrade within the next year. Respondents were also asked what security measures they would take, if they did upgrade their fleet to Windows 7, with 30 per cent saying that they had no firm plans and 38 per cent saying they would upgrade only their existing security software.

Nick Lowe, Check Point's regional director for Northern Europe, said: “It's very surprising that the losses, thefts and malware outbreaks suffered by organisations over the past two years have had such little impact on the way UK organisations secure laptop PCs. These machines are the most vulnerable point in a business' IT set-up, and yet they remain largely unsecured.

“It's also interesting that the majority of those surveyed are adopting a wait-and-see attitude to Windows 7 – it seems that organisations want to squeeze maximum value from their existing machines. But the lack of security on laptops, and the lack of plans to address this, should set alarm bells ringing:  it's only a matter of time before a breach or infection happens to organisations without protection.”