Thursday, March 1, 2012

HOW TO PREPARE YOUR MAC FOR THEFT

STAY FIXED TIP no. 7

Recently a few clients have had their computers stolen or lost their iPhones. I once had a cabby speed off with my iPhone, as I heard it fall out of my pocket and I turned around to grab it. I know how it feels. It's a sickening feeling to have your Apple device stolen but even worse to have all your private information compromised. Just imagine someone gaining access to your bank account or email account. Checking out all your photos and media, and listening to your favorite jams. Definite nightmare. Check out my tips after the jump to keep your data safe.

I can't guarantee you'll retrieve your Apple device but these tips will give you a fighting chance.

Step 1:
Back up your computer. I can't stress this enough. If your computer gets jacked at least you'll still have all your data. If you're an iPhone user, iTunes backs up your phone every time you connect it to your computer and will be included in the full backup of your computer.

Step 2:
If you're running a Mac with Mac OS X Lion installed then you're in luck! Lion includes a feature called "Find My Mac" that will place your stolen computer on a map for you to track. It can also set a passcode to lock your device or send it a signal to completely wipe your personal information.

Turn this feature on by navigating to the iCloud preference pane in System Preferences.

Step 3:
If you're running an earlier version of Mac OS X you're still in luck. But this luck will cost you. Hidden App is paid software that will track your stolen computer. Hidden costs $15 a year but it's well worth it. "Hidden will kick into action and locate it anywhere, collect photos of the thief and screen shots of the computer in use." Check out the blog "This Guy Has My Macbook" of a dude who was able to retrieve his computer using this software. Gross huh?

Step 4:
Brush up on your street smarts. 

Don't use your computer on the bus. That's just asking for trouble.

Don't ask someone to watch your computer at the coffee shop while you use the restroom. Take your computer with you. Most restrooms have hooks where you can hang your computer bag. 

Stash all your valuables in the truck every time you park your car. I don't even leave my jackets visible in my car.

If you have a portable computer, stash it in a drawer every time you leave the house. Keeping it out of sight is always a good idea.

And if your computer is stolen, immediately change all your passwords and file a police report for good measure.

Step 5:
If you have the cash, add your computer and iPhone to your renter's insurance for some extra piece of mind.

Salud to being cautious! Until next time.

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