So in the event that you lose your laptop there are a number of steps you can take to reduce the potential damage, and also implement some preventive measures to reduce the security risks.
Here are 5 steps you should take if your laptop is lost or stolen:
1- Change the passwords for all your accounts:
This is the first step that most security experts recommend, so if you lose your laptop, the first thing you should do is change all passwords for your accounts, start with your email password, and make it long, strong and unique. Your password is the key to your other accounts, and a thief can use it to reset login information for other accounts.
Once your email account is secure, start by changing the passwords for your other accounts, such as: social media and bank account passwords. Changing passwords is important, but the most important thing is to use a strong password that is unique to each account.
2- Clear autofill data in web browsers:
If you have enabled the auto-fill feature in your web browsers, then all the thief needs to access your accounts is to open this browser, so log into the browser you are using on your computer from another device and go to the settings, turn off the auto login options and delete the passwords Saved.
You should also clear your browsing data; To remove saved logins from any devices that sync with your Google account, log out of Google Chrome or Firefox and Safari remotely, and remove all saved payment information from your e-commerce accounts, such as: Amazon.
3- Track your laptop geographic location:
This advice generally only works if your laptop is connected to the Internet, as you can use the Find My features on a Mac to see connected devices on the map, and take several measures to secure them, including identifying them as missing, which leads to locking them. And disable (Apple Pay) service, and enable remote data wipe.
Windows users can follow the instructions on the support page via this link, and you can also use third-party programs, such as: Prey, which gives you options for remote control, and many anti-virus programs also contain laptop tracking features.
4- Informing company officials about the loss of the computer:
If you lose your laptop and it is for work, you must notify your line manager immediately, as sometimes your company may have specific protocols to follow, additional options to track or wipe the device, or installed software that can recover your data.
5- Additional prevention steps:
You cannot predict if your laptop will be lost or stolen, but you can take preventive steps to protect it if this happens, such as:
Write down the computer’s serial number so that it will be at your fingertips if prompted.
Secure your laptop with a password, and if your computer supports the biometric authentication feature such as: fingerprint or face recognition, enable it.
Enable the shutdown feature after a certain number of failed login attempts.
Use a password manager app instead of the computer and browser autofill feature to create strong, unique passwords.
Set up an automatic backup of your computer data in case you need to wipe it remotely.
Use the EFS (Encrypting File System) feature that allows you to encrypt any type of file, as well as full folders in Windows 10 to secure important data, or Bitlocker to encrypt the hard drive itself.
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