The number of lost laptops, whether stolen or lost, (added to other high mobility devices such as tablets, smartphones or wearables), are counted by millions of units every year worldwide. Its effect multiplies in vacation periods where the greatest displacements and crowds in transport centers and public areas occur, but the truth is that this type of theft (or loss) can occur at any time.

Intel has announced an alliance with specialized firm Tile, to include your tracking technology in laptops. The alliance has the potential to encourage manufacturers to quickly enable location services to recover lost devices.

Tile’s system is based on the low-power wireless standard, Bluetooth LE, with trackers that periodically ping a nearby smartphone to update the location of an electronic product. Since a given device is not always within range, the company also supports anonymous location records expanding the reach of the network.

Tile sells its own trackers and offers free or premium paid service levels. It is not the first time that it includes its technology in laptops and it has agreements with manufacturers like HP that include it in some of its advanced laptops such as the Elite Dragonfly.

However, partnership with Intel has greater potential. By integrating it at the chip level, it paves the way for any of its partners to use it against lost laptops, including it in many more models and presumably with less complexity and greater functions, such as tracking when in sleep mode. This system is expected to be available from the end of 2020.

Lost laptops: prevention against theft or loss

The loss of our laptop, smartphone or tablet is a major headache. In addition to the direct economic loss of the hardware, leaving our professional, financial or personal data that we keep on the equipment or passwords for access to Internet services to third parties, may represent an unquantifiable cost.

There are systems like Tile’s that facilitate its recovery, but it is better to adopt some basic protection measures against lost laptops, either due to theft or loss, minimizing their impact or, if appropriate, having the opportunity to recover them. We remind you of the most important:

one.- Save the purchase invoice as the essential proof to file the corresponding complaint in case of loss or theft.

2.- Write down all the laptop or mobile device data, including serial number and MAC address, a network data that uniquely identifies the equipment.

3.- Make a discreet brand on your computer if possible and keep a photograph of it to demonstrate unequivocally that it is your property. You can also include a sticker with your name and mobile phone. Not all losses of mobile equipment are due to theft and in case of loss they will be able to contact you.

4.- Never leave your equipment in sight in public places if you are not using it. These sites are where the majority of cases of loss and theft of an electronic device occur.

5.- Be sure to make Backups of all your data in case of travel or if you are a mobile business user. If the loss occurs at least you can recover the data. Likewise, keep your most valuable files in encrypted folders and, if you use online storage services, keep your passwords safe.

6.- Activate the integrated security systems of your device, such as the unlock password, the fingerprint reader or the biometric authentication systems included in the device.

6.- Block access to BIOS from your computer and to the system administrator account with the strongest possible password.

7.- Use the anchoring systems available in your laptop, to secure the equipment in seminars, conferences, libraries or public transport areas.

8.- Evaluate the hiring of a specific insurance in the case of theft or loss. Standard insurance does not usually include theft in coverage.

9.- Active specific anti-theft systems such as Intel Anti-Theft if your laptop allows it, which prevents the starting of the equipment at the hardware level (CPU / Chipset / BIOS / Drivers) and also the access to the data of the storage unit.

10.- Alternatively, you can use security services like Tile’s or others like that offered by companies like Prey, with commercial or free solutions.

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