NWA-PCUG Newsletter Article, August 2011
President' Corner
by Wes Eckles, President
(click to email author)

What To Do Before Your Laptop is stolen!
Software is available that will aid in the recovery of your laptop. Three theft recovery programs were reviewed by Neil J. Rubenking, Lead Analyst for Security, PCMagazine. Following are condensed quotes about the programs.

Laptop Cop (rated very good 6/3/2011): "When you report your laptop stolen, Laptop Cop springs into action. Running invisibly on the laptop, it lets you rescue or delete files.

Comprehensive Web monitoring captures everything the thief does, until you've got enough evidence for police to arrest the perp and return your laptop."

LoJack for Laptops by Absolute Software (rated very good 6/21/2011): "Just as with LoJack for cars, LoJack for laptops only kicks into action when you report a theft. At that time the company's recovery experts take over the recovery process. On some laptops LoJack can even survive reformat or replacement of the hard drive."

GadgetTrak Laptop Security (rated good 6/21/2011): "GadgetTrak knows where your stolen laptop is. The slick GadgetTrak online dashboard lets you enable tracking when your laptop is stolen and view its location history. Detailed email reports include webcam images of the thief. It won't retrieve or delete sensitive files, though, and if the thief logs in with an Administrator account you're hosed."

These programs are not free. You pay a yearly fee for the service. I do not recommend any of the free programs available. Your laptop and its contents is too valuable to take a chance on a free program. Search Amazon for prices : Laptop Cop - $42 and LoJack - $22.29; GadgetTrak - $39.99. Go on the web to PCmag.com, click on the Reviews tab, and search for the three program reviews by title. You can read a detailed evaluation of each program and how they work.

Google is cutting off old browser support Google will no longer support Google apps run on the following browsers: Internet Explorer 7, Firefox 3.5, and Safari 3. Google says it general policy will be ".... to support the current and prior major release of Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari on a rolling basis. Each time a new version is released, we'll begin supporting the update and stop supporting the third oldest version."

I received a phone call from a friend while I was writing this edition of Corner. Her computer had gone crazy. All kinds of stuff kept appearing. She could not stop it. She ran a anti-malware program. It did not work. The problem was still there. I told her to turn-off the computer and take it to a local certified Microsoft Technician I recommend. What did he find and how did he fix the problems? To be continued in the next Newsletter..

Email your questions or comments to ALERT@IEEE.ORG.

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