A third of companies are failing to deploy data loss prevention (DLP), while less than half of small-to-medium sized businesses install the technology.

Research by DeviceLock found that despite the rise of smartphone and remote working devices, less than half of all respondents who had deployed a DLP solution controlled the data synchronisations between employees' computers and their smartphones.

Commenting, Alexei Lesnykh, business development manager for DeviceLock, claimed that there are a lot of issues and topics to consider and discuss.

He said: “If you talk about the smartphone then I am not aware of a DLP solution, but in this survey we tried to articulate the solution personally, and look at where data would leak. In our opinion that was with a device where data could leak, as it is not a network problem it is communicative.”

Further research showed that a quarter of respondents that use DLP solutions are able to control the content of documents printed from corporate computers and three-quarters acknowledged that they monitor employees' webmail and social networking applications such as Facebook and Twitter to prevent data leakage, regardless of whether corporate or private accounts are used.

Commenting on a report this week about monitoring and filtering personal webmail accounts, Lesnykh said that often there is no set up to filter personal accounts to find something that belongs to the organisation that is not supposed to be sent through a personal account.

Only eight per cent of respondents believed that privacy concerns are an obstacle for enforcing such controls, suggesting that concerns about security breaches override those of privacy.

Sacha Chahrvin, UK managing director at DeviceLock, said: “The fact that many organisations are still failing to adequately address data leakage prevention is concerning. However, the increasing integration of endpoint content filtering and device control technologies, as well as the growing popularity of complete content-aware endpoint DLP solutions should help to address this.

“IT departments are becoming acutely aware of the need to keep costs arising from highly resource intensive processes – such as security compliance auditing, incident investigations and forensic analysis to a minimum. Affordability and ease-of-use clearly remain significant barriers of entry for those responsible for protecting organisations', data especially amongst small-to-medium sized businesses.”