I just saw another story about the record number of data breaches in 2007 and while some of this is because of the activity of evil hackers (as opposed to True Hackers.. dedicated to curiosity, learning and making things work better).
It looks to me like most of it is because of people keeping sensitive stuff on laptops without bothering to encrypt it. I know that if I decide to keep sensitive data on a laptop, you can bet your last dollar that it’s going to be encrypted with GnuPG and then stored within an encrypted Truecrypt container.. The whole thing protected by a pair of passphrases of no less than thirty three characters each. I guarantee it’d take more effort than it’s worth to get into it.
Why businesses and government agencies don’t do stuff like this is beyond me. It’s not hard, can be done with FREE software and has been proven to be about as secure as anyone now alive needs. (as in it would take longer than anyone born today could reasonably expect to live in order to crack it… like a few hundred million years longer.)