Too much or too little sleep can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and early death, according to a study of over 116,000 people from across the world published recently. The researchers found that people who slept for longer than the recommended duration of six to eight hours a day had an increased risk of early death or developing diseases of the heart or blood vessels in the brain. Compared to people who slept for the recommended time, those who slept a total of eight to nine hours a day had a five Also Read – Add new books to your shelf per cent increased risk; people sleeping between nine and ten hours a day had an increased risk of 17 per cent and those sleeping more than ten hours a day had a 41 per cent increased risk. They also found a nine per cent increased risk for people who slept a total of six or fewer hours, but this finding was not statistically significant. Before adjusting for factors that might affect the results, the researchers found that for every 1,000 people sleeping six or fewer hours a night, 9.4 developed cardiovascular disease (CVD) or died per year. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThis occurred in 7.8 of those sleeping six to eight hours, 8.4 of those sleeping eight to nine hours, 10.4 of those sleeping nine to ten hours and 14.8 of those sleeping more than ten hours. “Our study shows that the optimal duration of estimated sleep is six to eight hours per day for adults,” said Chuangshi Wang, a PhD student at McMaster University in Canada. “Given that this is an observational study that can only show an association rather than proving a causal relationship, we cannot say that too much sleep per se causes cardiovascular diseases,” Wang said, lead author of the study published in the European Heart Journal. “However, too little sleep could be an underlying contributor to death and cases of cardiovascular disease, and too much sleep may indicate underlying conditions that increase risk,” she said. Associations between sleep and death or cardiovascular and other diseases have been suggested by other studies, but results have been contradictory. In addition, they tended to look at particular populations and did not necessarily take account of the fact that in some countries daytime napping can be common and considered healthy. The study looked at a total of 116,632 adults aged between 35 and 70 years in 21 countries with different income levels in seven geographic regions (North America and Europe, South America, the Middle East, South Asia, Southeast Asia, China and Africa). During an average (median) follow-up time of nearly eight years, 4,381 people died and 4,365 suffered a major cardiovascular problem such as a heart attack or stroke. Researchers found that regular daytime naps were more common in the Middle East, China, Southeast Asia and South America. The duration of daytime naps varied mainly from 30 to 60 minutes. People who slept six or fewer hours at night, but took a daytime nap, and so slept an average of 6.4 hours a day in total, had a slightly increased risk compared to those who slept between six and eight hours at night without a daytime nap, but this finding was not statistically significant. “Although daytime napping was associated with higher risks of death or cardiovascular problems in those with sufficient or longer sleep at night, this was not the case in people who slept under six hours at night,” Wang said. “In these individuals, a daytime nap seemed to compensate for the lack of sleep at night and to mitigate the risks,” she further added.
3 min read When it comes to securing work data, mobile devices can leave the door wide open for cybercriminals looking to steal sensitive information. Smartphones and tablets can also serve as weak points if employees unknowingly leak data or lose their hardware. Mobile devices can be much harder for IT departments to secure than your typical office desktop computer, since these gadgets follow us out into the field, on business trips and out to conferences. If your company is reliant on mobile tech for internal communications, here are four ways to be proactive about security.1. Install mobile updates.Mobile operating systems are constantly being updated to address vulnerabilities in previous version releases. Apple’s iOS 8.1.1 update is a relevant current example. This version addresses several Lock Screen, Spotlight, and other system weak points that could compromise the security of your accounts and your data. Jailbreak group PanguTeam was credited for, and thanked by, Apple for alerting the tech company of the three vulnerabilities that were addressed in this update.Related: BYOD Is the Corporate Norm But Data Security Lags Far Behind2. Don’t permit jailbroken devices.Apple’s closed system might seem like a nuisance to some users, but it can be a major boon for companies that want to keep their data secure. Users with jailbroken devices gain the flexibility of installing unauthorized or unofficial apps and features onto their devices. However, these unregulated apps can contain malicious features. It’s important for companies to enforce a no-jailbreak policy, especially in environments that rely on Bring Your Own Device strategies.3. Use MDM solutions.Mobile Device Management services can be a great way to secure smartphones and tablets over-the-air while keeping track of your inventory. You can create custom user profiles to load onto specific devices, allowing your company to image in-house technology quickly. Your IT department can also define security settings for in-house network connections, wireless printing, “open in” app management and resource access. MDM is also a great way to manage work content on BYOD devices, allowing you to push relevant apps, updates and work materials to your employees wirelessly. You can also un-enroll users remotely if they leave your company, automatically removing managed work apps from their devices. This will prevent former employees from accessing sensitive company data.Related: The Threat Lurking in Bringing Your Own Device to Work4. Enforce passwords.Mobile devices that do not have complex passcode protection are a significant weak point for your company’s data security. For example, what happens if an employee leaves an unlocked tablet on a train before work? Someone who finds the device could suddenly access your company’s address book, correspondences and other internal systems. You can reduce the risk of unauthorized intrusions by enforcing passcode usage on work devices. It’s possible to set rules regarding passcodes via MDM.How safe are your company’s mobile devices? If you haven’t enacted proactive security measures for your work tablets and smartphones yet, then it’s time to work with your IT department to address these needs. As mobile devices become increasingly relevant in the workplace, companies will need to brace themselves for unintentional data leaks, malware and potential attacks.Related: 5 Ways to Encourage BYOD and Keep Your Company Data Secure January 28, 2015 Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Register Now »