Forget the notion that laptops are getting cheaper.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has a laptop and external hard drive, recently recovered by the folks at the FBI, which will cost them and us at least $160 million.
It all started May 3 when a laptop computer and external hard drive were stolen from a residence in Aspen Hills, Maryland. The gear contained birthdates, Social Security Numbers and other personal information on veterans and some military personnel. The bigwigs at VA didn’t know about the loss until May 16, or so they have claimed. Originally, it was thought that 26.5 million veterans were at risk. In late June, the laptop and external drive were recovered, thanks to a $50,000 reward. VA and FBI officials now believe lass than 18 million people’s records were at risk.
In the meantime, however, VA promised to pay for one year’s worth or credit monitoring for all potential people impacted – at a cost of $160 million.
Many incidentsThe incident is just one of many involving corporate and government laptop computers gone missing, stolen or compromised.
More corporations are purchasing laptops for their executives and office workers, who have network porting at work but taken the computers home at night. And there’s the concern of vulnerabilities.
Here are seven tips to better secure laptops and their data.
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