Lost your laptop? An India based software security company might just have a solution for you. Unistal Systems has launched a software product powered by propriety technology to track and locate stolen laptops. When the thieves hook the stolen laptop onto the world wide web, the installed software, which by the way is operating in a stealth mode, would generate a report and update an online database. The users either have the option of logging into the website to check the details or configure it to send them an email whenever an update is detected.
It is much easier to lose laptops as compare to desktops. When you lug those sleek things around, the chances of thieves prying at them also goes up many fold. As the usage of laptop grows world wide, so do the number of reported thefts. And when the laptop belongs to a company or government agency, the cost of the damage rises exponentially because then it affects multiple parties. Whether the laptop contains SSN of tens of thousands of users or trade secrets, the loss can be pretty high/damaging.
Alok Gupta, the director of the company quotes all the right numbers while making his sales pitch – laptop thefts and loss are on an incessant rise, and have led to serious damages for professionals and corporates, about 97 percent of stolen PCs are never recovered, and 57 percent of corporate crimes are linked to them.
Pretty interesting facts but how effective will the technique to handle it be in a country like India is yet to be seen. Fine you lose your laptop in Mumbai and 6 months later your get an email saying the laptop was found connecting to the Internet in Goa. What do you do? Do you take a vacation cum business trip to Goa to find your laptop or do you report it to the police. The seriousness of the police in resolving such matters, considering you are a common man with no contacts and all, will have to be seen to be believed.
I am quite skeptical about this whole thing but given that it only costs Rs 3000 ($75) bucks, perhaps non critical government departments like Electricity board or Water works can try it out. Of course the IT dept or managers should not inform even their own employees that this software is installed on the laptops as internal thefts are quite common too.
The reason I don’t think this technology is military or corporate grade is because the professional who’ll be stealing a laptop for espionage purposes etc. would most likely be aware of such techniques and may not hook it up to the web.
Unistal Systems is putting its reputation on line by guaranteeing the tracking of a lost laptop by offering this deal – Money Back Guarantee
(Get Back 5 times the cost of Locate Laptop in case laptop is not traceable – Applicable for INDIAN Clients only and proper FIR submission).
Laptop Loss And How to Deal With It
Common sense is usually the best defense. Don’t leave your laptop in the plain view in a car or let it go out of sight at airport or at a conference.
However laptop loss is a fact of life and more than half a million laptops get stolen every year. People have even gotten stabbed for their laptops as some years back an owner of Apple notebook unfortunately found.
Some steps you should take to alleviate the loss of a laptop include backing up your data periodically to an external storage at home or office. Encrypting your data is another choice. These days many companies sell sophisticated encryption software. You can also find free softwares from the CNET site – http://www.download.com. Make use of it to secure your data. Encrypting only certain critical files and data is also acceptable.
The reassuring fact is that majority of thefts are carried out by petty criminals who a decade back were stealing car stereos. Generally they are interested only in the hardware, but still one cannot take chances as identity theft is increasingly becoming common.