Is your computer a health hazard?

Mice droppings found in computer keyboards are being blamed for a growing health crisis within the workplace.

Every day, thousands of office workers around the country are unknowingly putting their health a risk, according to new research by the Royal Society of Chemistry.

The latest study has revealed that mice are leaving droppings in computer keyboards while they scavenge for food crumbs at night.

It is notoriously difficult to banish rodents from office blocks, particularly older building, the society says.

Consequently, they are urging workers to always wash their hands before eating at their desks.

As a way of encouraging workers to pay more attention to computer hygiene, RSC spokesman Paul Gallagher added: ‘We are asking office workers to take photos of offensive keyboards and workstations and to email them to us at the RSC.

‘We will give £300 to the sender of the most awful image. We won’t entertain photos that are contrived and will need witnesses.’

It’s not the first time computers have been blamed for health problems. In 2008, a study carried out by Which? found they can harbour more harmful bacteria than a toilet seat.

In one case, a keyboard was found to be so dirty, a microbiologist ordered it to be quarantined and cleaned – it had 150 times the acceptable limit of bacteria.

Experts say such findings are typical of offices all over Britain.

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