Tech Talk Africa
When securing your laptop, it is important to think about both adding software and ensuring that there are physical anti theft features in place.
These features can range from using asset tags to identify and track a laptop, as well as locks, and can be used alongside anti virus software and encryption protocols.
Putting these kind of anti theft measures into place will ultimately mean that you can have greater peace of mind over the risk of having your laptop stolen.
As with any form of computer and Internet security, it is also important to be cautious in terms of who receives access to your laptop, and where it is stored.
1 – Anti Virus Software
All laptops, with the exception of inbuilt Mac anti virus software, should have some form of protection. Most computers will use McAfee, although there are many other types of software that can be downloaded for free and run as part of your everyday computer usage. The main approach to take is one that prevents a problem like a computer virus from happening through software that alerts you to a potential threat to your laptop, and prevents you from accessing websites or opening email attachments that might cause damage.
2 – Asset Tags
Representing small labels that can be fixed to your laptop, asset tags are invaluable as ways of clearly identifying ownership for a laptop, and for containing serial number and barcode information that can be uploaded onto an office asset management system, and used to track and identify a laptop if it has been stolen and resold. Asset tags tend to be almost impossible to remove once they have been fixed, and act as a strong anti-theft deterrent.
3 – Tracking
Other types of software are available that can be used to remotely track a laptop if it has been stolen. This software works through GPS tracking, and can identify when a computer is being used to access the Internet, or when it has been used to log into a particular network. Some types of software will allow you to remotely lock or freeze your laptop contents, while cloud based data storage devices can mean that you can check whether a thief has uploaded anything that might incriminate them.
4 – Laptop Locks
Simple locks can be bought that will prevent a laptop from being easily opened and stolen. These locks can include theft detection plates that can be fixed to a laptop when not in use, as well as chain and cable locks that can be wrapped around a laptop to prevent the screen from being opened. This kind of physical locking is recommended if a laptop is being stored during a long transit.
5 – Encryption
It is crucial to be careful about encrypting your laptop when you access local networks. Your own WEP or LAN network should have its own network key that prevents unauthorised access, while it is important to have separate log in encryption in place for the laptop itself. As a general rule, it is also best not to have the same password and login details for multiple sites.