(BOSTON, Mass. – March 11, 2008 – IDTheftSecurity.com) In the U.K., wide-scale laptop computer thefts and losses from the country’s government agencies have contributed to a continuing rise in the estimated cost of laptop theft. Robert Siciliano, a widely televised and quoted personal security and identity theft expert, urged organizations to dodge the financial risk of by adopting affordable laptop computer security measures such as those from MyLaptopGPS™.
“Laptop theft is more than a nuisance,” said Siciliano. “Loss of the hardware is the least of an organization’s worries. Just one lost mobile computer can set a business back thousands of dollars. The associated cost of informing all those whose sensitive information resides on the stolen or otherwise lost machine is just one consideration. And then there are the catastrophic legal bills from potential class action lawsuits. Inexpensive preventive measures are far preferable to a roll of the dice.”
CEO of IDTheftSecurity.com and a member of the Bank Fraud & IT Security Report‘s editorial board, Siciliano leads Fortune 500 companies and their clients in workshops that explore consumer education solutions for security issues. A longtime identity theft speaker and author of “The Safety Minute: 01,” he has discussed data security and consumer protection on CNBC, on NBC’s “Today Show,” FOX News, and elsewhere.
Laptop thefts in the U.K. publicized over the past month have left countless unique data records at risk of further foul play. The government there admitted that it had misplaced or lost to thieves more than 1,000 mobile computers, the Agence France-Presse reported in early March, with 20 percent or more of these having gone missing in 2007.
In a recent example of the hemorrhaging, news outlets reported in February the loss of 5,123 patients’ data records on a laptop computer stolen from a National Health Service hospital in the U.K. In reports last month, the loss of two laptops from the Royal Navy placed another 600,000 unique data records in jeopardy of further foul play.
Three weeks ago, MyLaptopGPS™, provider of Internet-based GPS tracking software for stolen mobile computing equipment, announced the Realtime Estimated Damage Index (REDI). The REDI keeps a running tally of high-profile laptop and desktop computer thefts and losses and the associated costs.
Visible at the company’s website, the REDI estimated the financial damage from computer losses since the beginning of this year alone to be $309,318,519 as of Feb. 21st. Today’s total of $325,376,519 represented a 5 percent increase in just three weeks’ time, a rate that would lead to nearly a 90 percent year-over-year rise in cost by March of 2009. The REDI’s calculation, based on estimates from the FBI and elsewhere reflecting the likelihood that identity theft and other crimes will occur when a laptop is lost, dwarfed the cost of the $9.95 monthly subscription fee for MyLaptopGPS’s software.
“Ninety percent is eye-opening,” said Dan Yost, chief technology officer at MyLaptopGPS. “And yet, the year-over-year increase by this time in 2009 could even exceed one hundred percent. By the middle of February the REDI had already calculated nearly three hundred million dollars in financial losses due to laptop theft this year. Compare that to less than twenty dollars, which is what MyLaptopGPS would have cost any one organization during the same time period. The smart choice is clear.”
MyLaptopGPS combines Internet-based GPS tracking — which, for tracking and retrieving stolen laptops, is more effective than other forms of GPS — with other functionalities to secure mobile computing devices. Users launch MyLaptopGPS’ features remotely, protecting data even while the machine is in a criminal’s hands. Once connected to the Internet, the software silently retrieves, and then deletes, files from machines as it tracks the stolen or missing hardware — at once returning the data to its rightful owner and removing it from the lost computer.
“My laptop is a crucial tool,” said Eddie Manning, proprietor of London Airport Transfer Service. “It contains vital business information, even if it doesn’t contain ‘thousands of social security numbers’ like the headline stolen ones do. There is no way I or my business can afford to have the data, nor the machine itself, just walk away. MyLaptopGPS is the answer.”
MyLaptopGPS also offers SafeRegistry™, a comprehensive system for inventorying entire fleets of mobile computers, as well as a full line of highly renowned SafeTags™, which are police-traceable property tags designed to secure iPods, cell phones, BlackBerry devices, and other mobile property.
According to USA Today, theft of personal data more than tripled in 2007. Readers may view video of Siciliano below discussing this news on the new “FOX Business” network. To learn more about identity theft, a major concern for anyone who’s lost a laptop computer to thieves, readers may go to video of Siciliano at VideoJug.
Since 1984, Tri-8, Inc. (DBA MyLaptopGPS.com) has specialized in complete system integration. From real-time electronic payment processing software to renowned mid-market ERP implementations, the executive team at MyLaptopGPS has been serving leading enterprises and implementing world-class data systems that simply work. With MyLaptopGPS™, Tri-8, Inc. brings a level of expertise, dedication, knowledge and service that is unmatched. MyLaptopGPS™’s rock-solid performance, security, and reliability flow directly from the company’s commitment to top-notch software products and services for almost 25 years.
Identity theft affects us all, and Robert Siciliano, CEO of IDTheftSecurity.com and member of the Bank Fraud & IT Security Report‘s editorial board, makes it his mission to provide consumer education solutions on identity theft to Fortune 500 companies and their clients. A leader of personal safety and security seminars nationwide, Siciliano has been featured on “The Today Show,” CNN, MSNBC, CNBC, “FOX News,” “The Suze Orman Show,” “The Montel Williams Show,” “Maury Povich,” “Sally Jesse Raphael,” “The Howard Stern Show,” and “Inside Edition.” The Privacy Learning Institute features him on its Website. Numerous magazines, print news outlets, and wire services have turned to him, as well, for expert commentary on personal security and identity theft. These include Forbes, USA Today, Entrepreneur, Woman’s Day, Mademoiselle, Good Housekeeping, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Times, The Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, United Press International, Reuters, and others.
The media are encouraged to get in touch with any of the following individuals: