Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Anti-Theft Your Computer

This unlucky beer could be your computer. Do you have roommates who always forget to lock the doors? Do you live in a sketchy neighborhood? Is your computer worth more than your car? Is there a high probability of looting in the event of a natural disaster?

If you answered 'yes' to any of those questions, you might consider protecting, what for many is, your most valuable possession.

Think of all those mp3's you've "legally downloaded" over the years... What about all of those DVDs you've ripped as "backups"... Those pictures of your ex girlfriend that you've been keeping in a "safe place" (folder named 'Boring old tax stuff') as future blackmail...

How would you live without your computer?

Fear no more, here is how to anti-theft your computer for less than $6.00, and it doesn't look half bad either.

What you'll need:
- Enough 1/8" plastic coated cable for the job. Buy extra just in case, or measure carefully.
- One hasp that a padlock can fit through. This is normally in with fence / gate hardware.
- A hammer.
- Cutting device (or measure what you'll need and have them cut it at the store).
- A drill or screwdriver.
- Oh, two little things for securing the cable ends in a loop; just ask them what it is and they'll know.

You can get that stuff, excluding the tools, for less than $10, and maybe even the lock too.

Alright, once you have that you'll need to find a way to fasten it to your computer. This one was easy. Just make a loop with the cable, then pound down the little aluminum clips to fasten it. Make sure you pound it pretty good so that the cable can't possibly slip through the clip. But don't go crazy and shatter it.

Here, I just looped the cable through the hole in the back of the iMac and then through itself. This one was easy, but you might have to get a little more creative with some other computers.

You might try bolting the hasp through the computer case if you have a PC. Odd are the would-be thief won't come prepared with a screwdriver and wrench anyway.

I attached the hasp to the underside of the desk so it would be hidden and made sure the screws that came with it wouldn't poke out the front.

From there, just close the hasp and attach the cable with the padlock.

I used a hasp like this because when it's closed, the screws are covered up by the hinge cover. That way, the would-be robber can't just unscrew it. Duh.

How effective is it? Well here's a tip, just measure out how much you need and have the guys at the store cut the cable. Unless you have bolt cutters.

There you go, now you just need to change your screensaver password from 'apple' or 'swodniw' ('windows' backwards, pure genius) to something a little more secure and you'll stop getting tubgirl backgrounds, too.


Anna said...

That's awesome! Every college student should figure this out for their computer. THANKS!

Brandon Hansen said...

thumb drive?