laptop security

Laptop Security Devices

Manufacturers of laptop security devices naturally promote their products using the classical themes of fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD).

These products include:

  • Laptop security cables
  • Laptop security locks
  • Laptop safes and security cabinets
  • Laptop security alarms and motion detectors

The statistics quoted confirm an explosion in laptop theft and very low rates of recovery. Insurance companies and law enforcement agencies are the usual authoritative sources of these statistics.

laptop security devices

Laptop theft is only one aspect of laptop security. It attracts attention because the statistics on theft and the cost of hardware replacement are readily available and attention grabbing. There can be no doubt that laptop theft is an exploding phenomena and the trend will continue irrespective of how much is spent on laptop security devices.

There are several issues with security devices:

Firstly, they are seldom used after the first few outings. Whether at the office, coffee shop, seminar or airport lounge it's a rare sight to spot a laptop security cable in use.

Secondly, they focus attention on the protection of a physical asset that can be easily replaced rather than data security. Data breach can have a cost that far exceeds hardware replacement.

Rather than investing in the latest laptop security products , we have found that simple remedies will produce better results. The most basic and effective is to develop the habit of never leaving a laptop unattended. They should be firmly gripped just as a wallet or purse containing $2,000 or $50,000 in cash would be. Few of us would leave a pile of cash unattended while ordering a coffee, but laptops are commonly left about airports and coffee shops with no apparent owner in attendance.

Prominently placed security plates such as those manufactured by Stop are an effective and inexpensive option for discouraging theft. They are highly reliable and inexpensive laptop security devices.

To counter the risk of theft from hotel rooms, offices and homes we recommend using a laptop security cable and taking out laptop insurance cover, but neither option will provide any real protection against data breach or identity theft. They only address the issues of property protection and replacement.

Laptop security is ultimately a matter of information security and the most effective way of securing data is with appropriate software, in particular whole of disk encryption software. The better encryption products not only prevent data breach in the event of theft, but also render the hardware un-bootable.

Laptop security software such as that available from PGP provide a high level of confidence that should a laptop be lost or stolen the final cost of the incident will not exceed the cost of replacing hardware.

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