Internet cost UK companies billions in productivity

As information technology permeates the structures of companies around the world, so does broadband Internet access and the joys associated with it.

However, two separate reports highlight the pitfalls that ‘always on internet’ has had on UK businesses.

The 2006 Department of Trade and Industry's Information Security Breaches survey found out that staff misuse of net resources (and generally computers) ranks second behind viruses and malware in security incidents.

Staff misuse is more prevalent than one might think. Nearly a fifth of UK businesses surveyed found out that staff actually misused their web access with a number of those employees actually downloading pornography and in some cases, child pornography.

But companies, which offer internet access to their employees, can also lose money in wasted hours. Thomas Cook surveyed 2,000 office workers and they found out that the average employee spent more than twelve hours a week – equivalent to a whopping 75 days a year - emailing friends and surfing the net. This amounts to several billions of pounds lost in unproductive hours.