A new survey of dry cleaners in the UK has discovered that over 17,000 memory sticks were left behind in 2010, highlighting major issues with USB security.
Well over 500 dry cleaners and launderettes in the UK were consulted in the research led by Credant Technologies, which measured removable media discoveries between December 2010 and January 2011.
Figures concluded that there was an increase in the number of USB sticks of more than 400 per cent when compared to the previous year, and double what was found in 2008.
Vice-president of marketing at Credant Technologies Sean Glynn, who led the research, said that unsuspecting consumers leave too many memory cards behind and they are putting proprietary information in the hands of possible criminals.
He added: "With the best intentions in the world, the reality is devices are often left behind and the information they contain could be devastating if disclosed. Organisations need to plan for this when developing their security strategies."
In another major issue of data loss this month, Google's Gmail had technical problems leading to 40,000 accounts being reset, and three days on the company is working to restore the information.