13 Replies Latest reply: Mar 25, 2007 3:12 PM by Icahnoclast
JRizzle Level 1 (10 points)
I am heading off to college in August, and laptops get stolen every year from college campuses. I was just curious to know, is there any sort of security feature that I could purchase to make sure my laptop will not be stolen from my dorm room?

Mac OS X (10.4.8), | iPod 20GB Photo 4th Gen |
  • iVmichael Level 6 (13,725 points)
    Honestly, your best bet would be to take out Insurance against loss/damage/theft ...
  • JRizzle Level 1 (10 points)
    I cant buy maybe a lock that would be a theft deterrant? That really is horrible. Would I take out that insurance with the college?
  • Pete Dillon Level 1 (5 points)

    for an interesting take on it.

    Youtube Link:
  • iVmichael Level 6 (13,725 points)
    In my experience locking computers to things doesn't stop morons trying to steal them, they just damage them.

    Most Universities and Colleges offer some sort of Insurance scheme for students belongings.
  • JRizzle Level 1 (10 points)
    That is a bummer. People are so idiotic. So you just suggest dont bother buying a lock, just take out insurance?
  • Honolulu Level 3 (950 points)
    There is a program like Lojack that you can install on your computer. Won't keep it from being stolen but can help in recovery.
  • iVmichael Level 6 (13,725 points)
    > People are so idiotic.

    Uh huh (just as well we aren't people

    > So you just suggest dont bother buying a lock, just take out insurance?

    Even when you 'lock' things folks still try and take them, often damaging the thing anyway ... (I speak from years of bitter experience running computer labs and workshops in Educational and Business environments) Student Union type Insurance that's restricted to Campus use is usually a reasonable/wise investment.
  • Bob Primiano Level 1 (20 points)
    Get - lojack for laptops, works just like with cars, uses a recovery system if stolen.


    In the office we have locks/cable that connect to a docking station, then to the desk - may not work for you ....

  • Ricktoronto Level 6 (11,550 points)
    Far cooler is Undercover which not only traces it but uses the iSight to photograph the thief and copies the activity the thief does.

    Plus it will start to simulate system failure as ameans of getting someone to take it in for repair.

    Students only pay $29 and not annually either.

  • KMoorehouse Level 1 (15 points)
    If anybody wants your laptop badly enough, they will get it regardless of what physical measures you put in place. Insurance is probably the best thing you can do besides buying a heavy safe for your room which would likely be very costly and not too practical given the size of many dorm rooms.

    You're really taking a huge risk leaving a laptop in your dorm room. I wouldn't trust any kind of locking device. My dad is a cop and he says all of them can be easily compromised.
  • munky :-) Level 1 (10 points)
    I don't know what these guys are all chatting about, but you surely go out and buy a Kensington lock (as well as insurance, obviously!) Admittidly it doesn't stop hardcore criminals as they will just break it/damage your laptop which has already been said, but in this case who gives a rats arse? They have made off with it still so you'll have to claim on the insurance anyway...

    Look at it this waty - did bike locks ever guarentee you wouldn't get your bike nicked? No. Did locking your house or car ever stop it being broken into or stolen? No, of course not! The point is locks are an extra deterent and provide some extra security/pease of mind which is intended to mainly stop the petty theives (exactly the kind of thief you are probably worried about if you think about it). For the sake of a few quid/bucks you'd be a prize idiot for not buying one!

    Obviously insurance is the most important security factor, I'm not disputing that, and whether you buy a lock as well is entirely upto you at the end of the day, but it makes no sense not to, surely? I see it as you have nothing to lose and possibly everything to gain, for the price of a pint!
  • Steven Davidson Level 2 (225 points)
    Undercover/loJack are neat solutions and all, but any semi tech-savvy thief will know not to directly power the laptop up after receiving it; they'll just pop the drive and re-format it before booting up. Locks are a great idea, but are kind of like copy protection in that they keep the more honest/casual thief from being tempted. Best would be a combination of all three; some kind of software retrieval to catch the less intelligent thief, hardware lock, plus insurance.

    You could also do what one of my co-workers did at school - he spray-painted a big stencil on the back of his tiBook; personalizes it and makes it less attractive for re-sale. He still has that laptop...
  • Icahnoclast Level 1 (10 points)
    Having just replaced the MacBook that was stolen from the high school library where I teach, I was naturally more security conscious with the replacement. I loaded LoJack on the new MB and bought a lock--the Kensington combo with the retractable cord. I won't elaborate on all the frustrations I had trying to figure out how to lock the thing, but I finally got it locked. The problem is that the lock is now permanently in place because the pre-programmed combo does not open the lock. I must have inadvertently changed the combo in trying to get the thing to lock. I now almost wish that the lock were as insecure as some of the accounts here suggest. Any suggestions?

    MacBookPro   Mac OS X (10.4.8)