The numbers are staggering, as the companies had a total of 3.68 million laptops, so it turns out that about 2.3 percent of them were lost or stolen over the course of a single year. What’s more, the study concluded that about 7 percent of all laptops would eventually be lost sometime during their operational lifetime. Many of the losses were deemed easily preventable, so it really all down to individual users.
The really worrying statistic is the average cost of a single lost laptop for the companies. The hardware cost makes up merely a fraction of the loss, but once you factor in lost data, intellectual property, legal expenses and worker productivity, the average cost runs up to $49,246. Hence, the 86,000 lost laptops cost the companies about $2.1 billion in a single year.
About 25 percent of laptops were lost due to theft, primarily car break-in, while another 15 were categorized as “probable theft” and the remaining 60 percent were just plain lost by their users.
With such high costs per, one would think that it would be a sensible idea to slap some stickers offering sizable rewards for people who return them.