Public Places Are A Prime Location For Laptop And Mobile Device Theft
If you’re like many of us, you’ve used a library, restaurant, coffee shop or an airport terminal to access the internet using your laptop or mobile device. These public access points are great - providing convenience to web surfers - and easy targets for thieves.
You can easily picture how the theft happens. A visitor leaves their unattended computer at a table while they go to the restroom or to refresh their beverage. When they return, they find that their device is missing after a crafty observer has stolen it.
Earlier this month a Sting Operation at a Los Angeles library caught a local man trying to steal a laptop that was intentionally left unattended by undercover officers. The library the Sting operation was conducted at reports that 17 thefts have occurred there in the last year. Top stolen items were Laptops, cellphones, iPods and bikes.
Public libraries aren’t the only “hotspot” for device theft. Airports are notorious for laptop and mobile device theft and loss. According to MXSweep, 12,000 laptop computers a week are lost or stolen at US airports. Given this number, 624,000 laptop computers are lost or stolen from airports annually. This is bad news if you’re one of the unlucky 624,000 laptop losers. If unauthorized people are able to access your sensitive and personal information, it could put your identity - and that of your contacts - at risk.
Protecting your computer from prying eyes, especially in the case of theft, isn’t as difficult as you might think. Individuals, businesses and organizations can utilize the power of mobile and laptop security software to remotely lock down their devices as soon as they notice they’ve gone missing. This software not only locks down your device, it snaps a webcam picture of the person trying to use it and reports the general geographical area that the device is being used at so you can recover it.
Using public places to access the Internet is still a great way to get out of the house and enjoy the ambiance of a coffee shop. Now it can just be safer.