Identity Theft Expert and MyLaptopGPS: Laptop Theft Incidents in U.S. and U.K. Show the Crime Affecting Wide Cross-Section of the Population

(BOSTON, Mass. – Oct. 3, 2008 – Two laptop thefts last month, one on each side of the Atlantic Ocean, illustrated that the potential victims of this type of crime represent a wide cross-section of the population. Yet widely televised and quoted personal security and identity theft expert Robert Siciliano noted that laptop theft is easily preventable. He directed organizations to MyLaptopGPS, a laptop tracking and data recovery company mentioned in the August 2008 issue of Inc. Magazine.

"When it comes to laptop theft, everyone seems to suffer from ‘it-can’t-happen-to-me’ syndrome," said Siciliano. "This attitude pervades all those affected, from potential victims to those who ultimately are responsible for laptop security. When it’s possible to show, however, that the crime can affect everyone involved, the chance for reform grows. And a major step in the direction of useful reform is the simple utilization of affordable laptop tracking technology."

CEO of and a member of the Bank Fraud & IT Security Report‘s editorial board, Siciliano leads Fortune 500 companies and their clients through presentations that explore security solutions for businesses and individuals. Author of "The Safety Minute: 01" and a longtime identity theft speaker, he has discussed data security and consumer protection on CNBC, NBC’s "Today Show," FOX News Network, and elsewhere.

A laptop computer belonging to sixth-largest Canadian banking institution National Bank fell into the hands of thieves who last week apparently lifted the machine from the office the organization’s headquarters, revealed a Sept. 24thGlobe and Mail report, which went on to note that the stolen equipment stored information on most of the bank’s mortgage customers.

Around the same time, news surfaced in the U.K. that four laptops belonging to the country’s Insolvency Service, a government department assigned to handling bankruptcy cases, had gone missing to thieves. One of the computers "contained personal information about former directors of 122 insolvent firms as well as insolvency practitioners, creditors and employees of the companies," reported Reuters on Sept. 17.

"What’s striking about these thefts is that each affected possibly very different subsets of the overall population," said MyLaptopGPS’ chief technology officer, Dan Yost, who invited readers to visit the MyLaptopGPS blog, where they may discuss laptop theft and loss. "One involved mortgage holders of presumably all income levels, whereas the other’s impact was largely on high-level government managers who are, presumably, financially well-off. The takeaway is this: Just about everyone’s identifying information exists on some computer, somewhere, and that machine – often a laptop — is prone to being stolen unless it’s equipped with the proper, anti-theft technology."

MyLaptopGPS maintains the Realtime Estimated Damage Index (REDI™), a running tally of highly publicized laptop and desktop computer thefts and losses. The REDI also assesses those losses’ associated costs by drawing on estimates from the FBI and other sources that reflect the likelihood that identity theft and other crimes will occur whenever a computer is misplaced or stolen. At its website, MyLaptopGPS also keeps a log of these high-profile laptop thefts.

MyLaptopGPS’ anti-laptop theft technology combines Internet-based GPS tracking — more effective than other forms of GPS for tracking and retrieving stolen laptops — with other functionalities to secure mobile computing devices. A user launches 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.

Additionally, MyLaptopGPS 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.

Readers may download a demo of MyLaptopGPS. A white paper is also available.

"Our laptop fleet was certainly worth protecting," said Jim Sullivan, the network, systems and security administrator for FastForms, Inc. "We had procedures in place to help secure the machines, but we realized that we needed some key, additional layers of security, such as covert tracking and remote-controlled data recovery and destruction. MyLaptopGPS’ solution is very easy to use, and we are quite satisfied. We would recommend MyLaptopGPS to any business seeking a simple solution to secure their laptops and data."

The YouTube video below shows Siciliano on FOX News Network, where he discussed this year’s data security breach at Hannaford Bros. and provided consumers affected by the theft with the tips they needed to avoid paying for fraudulent charges to their bank accounts and credit accounts. 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.


About MyLaptopGPS

Since 1984, Tri-8, Inc. (DBA 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 and member of the Bank Fraud & IT Security Report‘s editorial board, makes it his mission to educate 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." 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. For more information, visit Siciliano’s Web site, blog, and YouTube page.

The media are encouraged to get in touch with any of the following individuals:

John Dunivan
MyLaptopGPS Media Relations
PHONE: (405) 747-6654 (direct line)

Robert Siciliano, Personal Security Expert
CEO of
PHONE: 888-SICILIANO (742-4542)
FAX: 877-2-FAX-NOW (232-9669)

Brent W. Skinner
President & CEO of STETrevisions
PHONE: 617-875-4859
FAX: 866-663-6557