Lost/Stolen Equipment

What to do if your laptop/ other equipment is stolen

After calling the police to report the theft, a lost laptop should also be immediately reported to the Service Desk. When contacting the Service Desk, you will be asked a series of questions including ones about whether any personally identifiable information was saved on the computer itself. It's important to always be certain of the answer to this question. 

Methods to reduce the Society's risk of a data breach

  • If you are removing a laptop from the office, do not make stops between the office and your home/hotel where you will have to leave the laptop unattended.
  • If you know that you need to stop before your ultimate destination, place the laptop out of sight (e.g., in the trunk) before you leave the office parking lot. If your vehicle does not have a trunk, make sure that the laptop is completely hidden under a blanket or car mat – again, before you leave the office parking lot; or bring the laptop into the store with you as you would your purse or wallet. Thieves will often watch people exiting their cars and look for opportunities. If you try to hide the laptop as you're getting out of your car, you may be showing the thief exactly where to find the asset.
  • Regularly check your hard drive, and remove any documents containing personal information. If you are offline and forced to save to the hard drive, make sure to transfer that information to the proper storage location at your first opportunity.
  • Delete "expired" or irrelevant documents. If you receive a contact list which has a designated date after which the document may not be used, set reminders on your calendar to ensure that you delete/destroy the document once it expires, or get into the habit of destroying such documents immediately after their use.