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Data cleansing

Barely a week goes by without a data loss story making an appearance on Finextra. A good proportion of these involve staff stupidity so I wasn't particularly surprised when a press release made its way to us claiming 9000 USB sticks are accidently left at UK dry cleaners every year.

Data security vendor Credant surveyed 500 dry cleaners and found that, on average, they come across two memory sticks stuck inside pockets each year.

No doubt most of these contain innocuous data that's of no interest to the owner, let alone anyone else.

But you wouldn't bet against at least one of the 9000 holding something that could prove handy to the criminal fraternity. Especially considering City types appear to have the most trouble emptying their pockets - one dry cleaner in the square mile claims to find a USB every couple of weeks.

Other items that have been accidently dropped off for a good scrub include credit cards, drugs, a Rolex watch and an envelope stuffed with diamonds.


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Matt White

Matt White

North America editor


Member since

27 Nov 2006



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