MEDIA coverage of the Olympic Games could seriously damage your business, a Huntingdonshire-based cyber-security expert believes.

While most businesses are prepared for Olympic disruption in London, few have considered what effect the Games will have in the workplace in other parts of the country, as the BBC reveals plans to stream live, high definition coverage to desktops, laptops, tablets and even smart phones.

The Security Company, based at Upper Dean, near Kimbolton, this week outlined the need for sound management policies at work during the Games to avoid a sharp fall in productivity and reduction in available bandwidth.

Researcher Ruth Pooley warned: "The BBC will be broadcasting up to 24 live HD streams, with the chance to rewind the live coverage; to users' desktops, laptops and tablets.

"Every event will be fully covered throughout the 17 days, and a free Olympics mobile app will allow smartphone audiences to access most of the desktop content wherever they may be.

"The BBC Sport website will offer a page for every sport, country, athlete and venue; including live updates, Twitter feeds and comments from across social media. Doubtless, Paralympic coverage will also be extensive.

"All of which is brilliant news for those who want to keep up to speed on the most significant sporting event of our lifetimes, happening in our own back yard.

"So it might seem churlish to sound a warning note about those who might find this an irresistible lure: either risking productivity losses when they should have their minds on their work; or devouring network bandwidth."

She added that recent research made it quite clear that those with the latest mobile technology would want to use it.

"You may feel that you are adequately covered by existing company policies and firewalls," she warned employers.

"You may have additional plans in place allowing the workforce controlled access to Olympics coverage in break times during the working day. Maybe you have guest WiFi installed for employees to use, to take the heat from the network server.

"Or at the other extreme, you might have banned all access, with the instruction to catch up on the recorded Olympics action at home.

"If, however, you have not yet considered how to manage the potential disruption, now is the time to do so - and let the Games bring nothing but good news."

INFORMATION: The Security Company (International) Limited is at Dean Court, Upper Dean, Huntingdon PE28 0NL: telephone 01234 708456; fax 01234 709861; www.thesecurityco.com/