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How to Protect your Laptop

Over the last decade laptops have over taken desktop PCs as the most commonly sold computer system. More and more people are opting for the convenience of a laptop that allows you to be connected to the internet and everything on your computer from anywhere in the world.

Although laptops have many advantages security is not one of them. Laptops are portable by their very nature which makes them easy to steal. Carrying such a valuable item around with you could unfortunately make you a target to thieves.

To help prevent your laptop or the data on it from being lost or stolen here are some top security tips.

1. Never advertise your laptop to thieves

man in cafe with laptop and mobile phone

When you have the latest technology it can sometimes be tempting to show it off, but when you are out in public this isn’t normally a good idea.

Thieves can be tempted by these valuable items and can go to great lengths to take it from you.

Even if you are in a place surrounded with the safety of people, thieves will often follow valuable items until they get an opportunity to take them.

If you’re out with your laptop keep it in a discreet bag that doesn’t obviously contain a laptop and try and avoid taking it to areas where you feel less secure.

2. Password protect everything

If you are taking your laptop outside on a regular basis it is a great idea to password protects not only the computer but also any individual files that you would not want other people to have or to see.

If your laptop is used for your work this may even be a contractual requirement.

Remember that random passwords are the most secure and should contain a mixture of letters (both upper and lower case) and numbers.

3. Use a laptop security cable chain

Even if you do not take your laptop out of your home it can be an easy item to take during a home burglary. You can make it harder for a thief to take your laptop by fitting a laptop chain.

Most laptops have a security slot that you can lock a specially designed chain too attaching these chains makes taking a laptop much harder. Many thieves are in a hurry and will leave behind a laptop secured in this way.

open laptop with padlock attached

4. Back up all your files

The worst part about losing a laptop is often losing all your data. You can replace your laptop but it can be very hard to get back all your photos, videos and documents stored on your hard disc. It is therefore important that you back up this data.

You could either back it all up to DVDs or an external hard disc or you could use online storage where you save all your data to the internet which you can then access anywhere. These online data centres have excellent security so it is normally the safest place to keep your data.

5. Install tracking software

Tracking software installed on your computer works silently in the background sending location information about your laptop to a website via the internet. This information is normally based on surrounding Wi-Fi connections. If the thief connects your computer to the internet you will be alerted as to where your computer is. This information can be extremely useful to the police for catching the thief and ultimately returning your property.

6. Business IT Security

If you use your laptop as part of a business or it is provided by your work place there are many companies that can offer IT security advice specific to your company's individual needs.

Business IT security companies make available security packages that include much of the devices and software talked about here. If laptop security is essential to your work it may be worth considering paying professionals.

Following these tips can help reduce the chances that your laptop will get stolen as well as making it easier to recover your data should you be unfortunate enough fall victim to such a crime.

Laptop Buying Guide





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