One in three workers would steal data to help a friend

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Global economic downturn increases desperation.

A third of workers would steal data to help a friend get a job while 13 per cent would take access and password codes if they were fired.

According to the The global recession and its effect on work ethics survey by Cyber-Ark, 48 per cent of respondents admitted that they would take company information with them if they were fired tomorrow.

Of the respondents, 39 per cent would download company/competitive information if they found that their job was at risk, and a quarter said that the recession has meant that they feel less loyal towards their employer. Also, 13 per cent would take access and password codes to allow access to the network once they've left the company, and continue downloading information and accessing whatever they want or need.

Cyber-Ark claimed that the recession is creating camaraderie amongst workforces at the expense of their employers, as 41 per cent confessed to have already taken sensitive data with them to their new position, whilst a third would pass on company information if it proved useful in getting friends or family a job.

The most desired information was customer and contact details for 29 per cent of respondents, then 18 per cent said that they would steal plans and proposals. 11 per cent would take product information.

Mark Fullbrook, UK director of Cyber-Ark, said: “While we are seeing glimmers of hope in the UK and US economy, clearly employee confidence has been rocked. While there is no excuse for employees who are willing to compromise their ethics to save their job, much of the responsibility for protecting sensitive proprietary data is the responsibility of the employer.

“Organisations must be willing to make improvements to how they monitor and control access to databases, networks and systems, even by those privileged users who have legitimate rights.”

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