Data theft has become the biggest crime hitting global business in the past year, overtaking physical larceny as rates soar by over 50%, a regular fraud survey reveals.
Some 27% of 801 companies surveyed in the annual Kroll study said they had experienced data theft in the past year, up 9% compared to the 2009 survey, while the number of physical thefts reported fell from 28% in 2009, FT.com reported.
Kroll found incidences of information and data theft were up 52% year-on-year, and that financial and professional services firms are most likely to be hit by such an attack.
Some 40% of services firms reported an attack in the past year, compared to 37% of technology and media firms the news site said.
Losses to fraud were highest in Asia-Pacific, with 92% of firms reporting fraudulent activity in the region compared to 88% in North America and 83% in the UK.
Kroll analyst Richard Plansky said IT was a double-edged sword, improving business efficiency but leaving enterprises open to attack. “Information systems are complicated and vulnerable to fraudsters,” he told the Times.
The survey also found that 10% of firms had been affected by piracy and counterfeiting in the past 12 months.