Laptop Loss Much Less Frequent at John Wayne Than Most U.S. Airports

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Often when searching for the best air travel bargains, Orange Countians will choose to fly out of Ontario or Los Angeles International because fares are cheaper than at John Wayne Airport--even given the higher costs associated with ground travel and lost time to those airports, which are reachable in an hour if the freeways cooperate.

But one cost locals don't factor in is the loss associated with losing one's laptop computer, which is three times more likely to happen at ONT and a fuck-zillion times more likely to happen at LAX.

Dell Computers and the Ponemon Institute just released findings of the first lost laptop and business traveler study of its kind that found 12,000 laptops are lost or stolen weekly at U.S. airports, with LAX leading the pack with 1,200 laptops. Over at ONT, the weekly laptop loss is 25. Our own SNA knocks around the bottom of the lost with a piddly 8. (Long Beach was not examined in the study, due perhaps to a bias against glorified mobile home terminals.)


Ponemon surveyed 106 U.S. airports and more than 800 business travelers over the first half of 2008 to understand the frequency with which laptops are lost in airports and the steps business travelers are taking to protect sensitive information on corporate systems. Besides the relative safety from laptop loss at SNA, interesting results of the report include:

  • Between 65 and 70 percent of lost laptops are never reclaimed
  • Most laptops are lost at security checkpoints
  • 53 percent of business travelers surveyed carry sensitive corporate information on their laptop
  • 65 percent of those who carry confidential information have not taken steps to protect it while traveling
  • 42 percent of respondents say they do not back up their data
Here is the full report.


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