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OT: Computer security, anti-theft

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Old 12-09-2003, 07:50 AM
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Default OT: Computer security, anti-theft

Over the weekend I bought the wife a laptop 'puter. She needed it for school and the sale was perfect timing so she got an early Christmas present.
What I bought was a Toshiba 17" 2.8ghz with a 60gb drive, 512mb ram, Wi-Fi, DVDR+RW/CD-RW and a host of other goodies.
During the registration process Toshiba offered to insure it against loss or theft. For 109.00 they'll insure it for three years with a "retreival program". What this is, is a program that is loaded on the drive and each time you log onto the net it will "call home" and report it's current location. If stolen, I report it, the thief signs on to the net, it calls home, the monitoring company traces the internet address and they call the cops then an arrest is made, I get my 'puter back. This program cannot be erased from the drive, even if the drive is reformated.
I think it's a good thing, except the part where it coninuously broadcasts my location. I feel it might lead to mointoring of our personal activities and possibly allow unauthorized searching of my files. It's not that I have anything to hide. I don't go looking at strange sites with dirty pictures.

What do you guys think about something like this?

Last edited by Iggy; 12-09-2003 at 07:52 AM.
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Old 12-09-2003, 08:02 AM
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I think I'd save the $109! I don't like the idea of someone having the ability to trace everything I do. Big brother is all around us and I realize that, but I don't want to pay to give them even better access into my personal affairs.

Just my 2 cents.
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Old 12-09-2003, 11:22 AM
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Here's a link to Toshiba's site with the detailed specs on the 'puter.

What do you think???

Toshiba Laptop
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Old 12-09-2003, 11:26 AM
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save the 109$, your home owner policy should cover the loss
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Old 12-09-2003, 11:35 AM
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You can buy an unobtrusive lock and cable for about 25 bucks, and lock it to the desk.

All they have to do is wipe the hard drive and your program is gone if they steal it. They can still get rid of it.
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Old 12-09-2003, 11:44 AM
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Retrieval company claims the program cannot be erased even with reformating the drive.
I would think that the entire drive would have to be replaced to be rid of it then. And that's if the thief finds out it's on the drive.
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Old 12-09-2003, 12:02 PM
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There's probably a way to erase the program, it may not be easy, but a bit of searching would probably reveal something. And if the thief runs a firewall, he'll be able to block the program from phoning home. Like you said, if he knows it's there.
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