It takes a thief less than six seconds to steal a computer. In other words, if you are in a coffee shop and leave your laptop on the table while you run to the bathroom, your computer may be gone by the time you get back. Most laptops are stolen from public areas. They are also often stolen from cars and homes.
For many people, a computer is a necessity. Computers and laptops are needed for work and school. The internet is the source most turn to now for information. Friends and family stay connected through various social sites. Laptops are used to design new ideas, enhance photographs and search for music. People depend heavily on their computers, yet they fail to protect them.
In just the past three years, 5.5 million computers have been stolen in the United States. Only 3% of these computers were ever recovered. 68% of the stolen computers were laptops while the least stolen were desktop systems.
Laptops are easy to grab and walk off with. One way to deter thieves is by using a locking security cable. This cable is similar to a bike lock. The security cable locks the laptop to a large or immovable object (such as a table) thus making it difficult to steal. Laptop locks are especially recommended for college students since a lot of computer thefts occur in the library or from residence halls.
Another option is using a recovery service such as LoJack for Laptops. If your computer is ever stolen, LoJack can locate it and notify the police. Absolute Software also tracks stolen computers. The vice president of Absolute Software, Lyle Singular, boasted, “Because of our persistent technology and ability to gather evidence for stolen computers, we’re able to recover computers on behalf of our customers and help give them peace-of-mind. Without the Absolute Theft Recovery Team…some of these computers would probably have never been recovered and the suspects never captured.”
Absolute Software helped recover a woman’s laptop that had been stolen from her car’s trunk. Within twenty-four hours, her computer had been found and the thief arrested. Another man’s laptop was stolen from his home and sold across the country, but Absolute tracked it down and recovered the stolen computer. Similarly, a student’s laptop was stolen at a university auditorium but found using LoJack for Laptops.
Since we depend so heavily on our computers, shouldn’t we take the same security precautions we use to protect our homes and vehicles? Just like we lock our homes and cars, we can lock our laptops, and just like we place tracking devices in our automobiles, we can track our computers. If you fail to take the necessary precautions, you may return to your table at the coffee shop to find your computer gone forever.