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Re: Stolen laptop - how to increase security?



Jérôme Lacoste wrote:
> [pre-scriptum: if anybody thinks this has nothing to do with the
> debian-laptop, please redirect me]
> 
> Hei,
> 
> Some of you may have read one of my last mail in the list on the 29th. Don't
> bother to answer the questions as my nice little laptop disappeared from my
> office yesterday while I was at home due to flooding in my apartment. Bad
> day :(

Ooh, that sucks. :(  Hope ya get it back.

> Here's what I think can be done (LAP identifies things that have a more
> important effect when used on a laptop compared to the desktop):
> 
> -- before the stealing --
> + (LAP) note the serial number in a secure place. This will be necessary if
> your laptop get stolen.

Definitely a good idea.

> + use a BIOS password. This can apparently be reset depending on the type.
> Jumper reset, use of a BIOS reseter, etc...

Like you say, some machines this is too easy to get around.
 
<snip>
> + use of software that connects and identifies itself?.

I once ran across an old DOS utility that did something like this.  IIRC  It
embedded itself into the bootsector and upon a certain keycombe it would
throw a serial number onto the screen and play an audio code through the
speaker (in case th monitor was no longer usable for whatever reason).  You
were supposed to register the serial number with the company that produced
the utility.  I think I still have the disk somewhere - I'll see if I can
locate it.
 
> I would appreciate any idea that could help us to increase our security.

This idea might not decrease the odds of the laptop being stolen, but it
will increase the chances of getting it back.  Open up the machine and
engrave some sort of ID (driver's license number, SSN, whatever) onto a
couple of places *inside* the case.  If your floppy / CDROM drives are the
easily removable type, engrave them too (carefully, please).
-- 
Mike Werner  KA8YSD   | He that is slow to believe anything and
                      | everything is of great understanding,
'91 GS500E            | for belief in one false principle is the
Morgantown WV         | beginning of all unwisdom.

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