7 Replies Latest reply: Jul 21, 2013 9:04 PM by steve359
sfrench Level 1 (0 points)

I made the mistake of loaning my old PowerBook to a PC person who ostensibly wanted "to learn how Macs work."  That person is now estranged and being extremely vindictive, and I'm having trouble getting my PowerBook back.  I know, I was an idiot.


Everything that's on the PowerBook is also on my current Mac, so I can afford to lose the info.  However, I really can't afford to have it in someone else's hands (particularly not this person's hands).  I'm a prime candidate for identity theft.


The Aluminum G4 12-inch PowerBook is running Tiger … and so can't connect to the Cloud.


Is there any way to wipe it remotely?  Or otherwise disable it?


All insights welcome.  Thank you.

PowerBook, iOS 4.3.3
  • BDAqua Level 10 (122,252 points)

    Yikes, I don't think it's possible, but did you have screen sharing enabled?

  • rccharles Level 5 (7,581 points)

    You would have to have screen sharing enabled or telnet enabled.


    If you can get onto the machine, you could get into terminal and delete files in the file system. You might be able to use a terminal command to reformat the hd. 


    This might not be legal.  I have no idea.  The more I think of it, I suspect it would be marginal at best.  It probably would not be legal.  he would claim ownership right via a free rental.  Not worth it.


    I'd consider calling the police. 


    Or sending a registered letter and wait awhile.  send a second registered letter & state you will call the police on a stated date.  Call police.



  • sfrench Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you both, BDAqua and rccharles, for chiming in with your best ideas for dealing with an impossible problem.


    The situation has turned out to be more sordid than I imagined, but I do have my PowerBook back.


    If you have any insights about how I can figure out whether any damage has been done to my computer or whether any of my data has been shopped, I love to hear them.


    In any case, thanks again.

  • BDAqua Level 10 (122,252 points)

    Whew, likely impossible to tell what data may have been shopped, but do change every Password you have everywhere.

  • rccharles Level 5 (7,581 points)

    I'd suggest you copy any files you want off of it to a flash drive.  Look for hidden files on the flash drive.


    Reformat the harddrive & re-install. 


    This is about the first time I have recommened re-formating the hd.



  • sfrench Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you both for your good advice … and calmness!

  • steve359 Level 6 (13,347 points)

    Not knowing your age, I will assume for now you are of age to be concerned about credit.


    If you had *any* financial data on the drive, pull a credit report immmediately and look for anything you did not authorize.  Also you can "freeze" your credit profile with Equifax/Experian/TransUnion for $5 per agency so that even you cannot add entries without un-freeze.


    Others may call me paranoid for advising, but this may end up being necessary.