As the most recent Wikileaks data dump has everyone talking there is one thing that has business worried: lost or stolen laptops that can lead to things like the Wikileaks data sharing of what is presumed to be private information.
A study by Intel and the Ponemon Institute (pdf) attempted to answer the question of how much this kind of loss costs companies. After asking 329 companies taking part in the study they found that the combined cost to corporation is $2.1 billion a year. On a per company basis this breaks down to $6.4 million per year.
Collectively, the companies studied said their employees lost more than 86,000 laptops during one year alone. The study by Intel and the Ponemon Institute showed that the cost per laptop was $49,246, a number that includes the cost of replacements and investigations related to the loss. The losses also include costs related to lost intellectual property, reduced productivity and legal and regulatory charges.
In a three-year span, the chance that a laptop will be lost or stolen is 5 to 10 percent. About 25 percent of lost laptops are due to theft, and another 15 percent are likely lost to theft. Some 60 percent are simply missing.