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Advice on laptop loss avoidance at airports

Absolute Software : 11 September, 2008  (Application Story)
With airports being the main point of loss for stolen laptops, Absolute Software provides some incite into how to prevent theft
Airports have become rich pickings for laptop and data thieves. Approximately 22.5 million business travellers pass through London Heathrow's terminals every year, and according to a recent survey by the Ponemon Institute, it is the worst offender for lost and stolen laptops with up to 900 devices going missing per week.

Data loss is hitting the headlines all too often, and despite most of these laptops having security precautions such as passwords and encryption in place, there is still a lot of fear that exists as to how the data can be used and what the consequences might be.

William Pound, Vice President, International Corporate Development of data loss and security firm, Absolute Software said: "As a business traveller, it is all too easy to mislay a laptop when running to catch a plane, so it is important that businesses have proper levels of security to help protect them against loss or theft. It is equally important that their employees understand what the company's security policy is and how to comply with it."

Absolute offers some advice on how to avoid becoming the next data loss headline:.

1 Never check your laptop in as luggage - Laptops should be taken onto a plane as hand luggage.
2 Don't make it obvious you are carrying a laptop - Rather than a tell-tale laptop bag, laptops should be carried in inconspicuous bags, such as backpacks or tote bags.
3 Avoid leaving laptops unattended - This should definitely be avoided at the airport as it will be 'disposed' of, but even if you turn your back for a moment the laptop could be taken by a diligent thief and soon lost in the crowd.
4 Discourage theft by publicising the use of security products such as asset tracking software - If thieves think that they might be caught, they will be less likely to take it in the first place.
5 Add identification to your laptop - For example, adding barcodes or engraving details onto the device will act as a deterrent. Thieves usually steal laptops to immediately sell them on. Obvious identification makes it a less desirable target.
6 Be extra careful through security - Be aware of thieves swapping briefcases coming out of the x-ray machine at security.

Absolute Software, the leading provider of patented computer theft recovery, data protection and Secure Asset Tracking solutions, offers ComputraceOne, which can delete data and confidential files on stolen laptops remotely and recovers thousands of missing devices across the globe annually. Absolute's customers include the Swiss Football Association, De Beers, and numerous financial institutions and government departments.

Absolute has tracked and recovered laptops to locations including Argentina, Norway, the Czech Republic, India and Saudi Arabia. It also has remotely deleted hundreds of thousands of documents contained on stolen computers, sparing companies the hefty fines that unprotected organisations have incurred.

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