12,000 laptops are lost in U.S. airports every week most at airport security, according to a report published Monday.
A study published by the Ponemon Institute and Dell Computer, reports 12,000 laptops are lost in airports each week. The study surveyed 800 business travelers and 106 major U.S. airports for their findings. 70 percent of travelers never recover their computers. Almost half of the business travelers report their laptops contain customer or sensitive information or confidential business data. Forty-two percent travelers reported they don’t backup their files. Most left their laptops at the airport security.
If you travel with your laptop, leave your business card in an transparent, plastic enclosure or a prominent pocket of the case and another taped to the keyboard. If you don’t have a business card then write a note with your name, address, and phone number. Make sure your cellphone number is included. Then, if you walk away without your laptop, airport security staff can call your cellphone before you board. Also, keep the amount of carry-ons to a minimum, so you’ll notice if walking away light or empty-handed.
Before you leave, backup your files. Some people like to encrypt their files. I’m a little leery of encryption because if your hard drive or computer has problems or needs to be repaired, encryption makes it difficult for techs to transfer or backup your data to another computer or hard drive. However, if your data is especially sensitive you should encrypt. Most thieves or other computer users aren’t going to see any value in your company data or be sophisticated enough to use it to malicious purposes, but it could happen.
Also as you leave airport security, do a mental check and make sure you have all your belongings, tickets, purse, passport, jewelry, change, keys, laptops, carry-ons.