Big Four accountants Ernst & Young and Deloitte were embarrassed in the US recently when a series of laptop thefts were highlighted in news reports.
In February, the San Francisco Chronicle reported that Ernst & Young had written to a group of clients whose Social Security numbers had been stored on a laptop that was stolen from an employee's car.
Around 9,000 employees of security software firm McAfee also had their personal details compromised when a Deloitte employee left the data behind in an airline seat pouch on an unencrypted CD-ROM.
The two episodes came to light as a result of a California state security breach law that requires organisations to inform individuals when their personal information may have been compromised. In the Ernst & Young case, Sun Microsystems CEO Scott McNealy...