Privace - Help Please

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by alacea, Nov 9, 2006.

  1. alacea macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2006
    #1
    Hi all, I just bought a new mac book (never used a mac before) on a neighbors reccommendation. It seems like an awesome machine. My neighbor has offered to install everything on it for me, (office software, games, photo stuff, etc etc.) Sounds like a great idea to me but it involves giving my neighbor my machine for a night or two and I'm concerned about my privacy if I go ahead and give it to him. If I delete my history is it gone forever? Or is there a way for the "mac expert" to recover this? If so is there a way I can delete my history completely before giving it to him. Thank you so much for your advise. :confused:
     
  2. ChickenSwartz macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2006
    #2
    I would ask your neighbor for a list of the software and hen you can download it and install it yourself. This will give you the chance to get to know you computer more. If the software is on disk, then it is probably illegal for him to instal it on your computer.
     
  3. r6girl Administrator/Editor

    r6girl

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #3
    well, it's a nice enough offer from your neighbor, but it sounds like he'll install software that he owns on your machine, and is not giving you the installation disks and software licenses? so, you'll have pirated software on your mac. are you comfortable with that, first and foremost? and i'm not trying to be preachy here - there was a time (when i was a poor college student) that i did this, and i never felt any guilt at the time.

    and, installing software is sooooo easy - you can totally do this yourself (as long as you have the installation disks, of course). personally, i wouldn't hand over my computer to a neighbor overnight just for this. you will have to give him your administrator password to install software, and with this he'll be able to view your keychain access and see any passwords you've saved there. no way around that unless you delete your keychain in advance. he'll also be able to read your email (if you use Mail, Entourage, or other mail program). If you don't clear your web browser cache (cookies), he could get to your eBay or other accounts you check regularly.

    overall, not worth it, imho. buy your own software and install it...
     
  4. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #4
    Tell us what kind of software you want, alacea, and we can help you find it, and tell you how to install it too.

    You can read about many Mac applications in our Links to Software Recommendation Threads.
     
  5. alacea thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2006
    #5
    Thank you for your suggestions

    My neighbor actually works for apple and I believe he will be charging me for the software (I certainly do not want any involvement with illegalies) and I've kinda told him already that I would give him my mac book to update for me. So I guess I just want to know how to get rid of all private info before handing it over. An apple technician instructed me to delete my keychain folder when I first used the machine last week when I had trouble with internet connection, which I thought was strange, but I just did what he told me, after all they claim to be the experts. He told me next time I shut down and restarted there would be a new keychain folder (havn't checked that out yet) So if I clear the history and delete the keychain folder is there anyway he can access my private information? Thanks again.
     
  6. kgarchar macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2006
  7. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #7
    Have you already been using the Mac much? If it is new, there shouldn't be much on it that's "private".

    What kind of private information are you worried about?

    Examples:
    • Passwords remembered in your keychain
    • Your login password
    • Web browser history
    • Web browser bookmarks
    • Email messages
    • The content of documents
    • other stuff?
     
  8. alacea thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2006
    #8
    Ha Ha

    Genius, now why didn't I think of that. I'll pass that very informative suggestion along to my husband. As for me I'm more concerned about employee social security numbers. Credit card info. Personal and Business bank accounts, online billing information, etc etc. Things that are MY business. So unless you have some useful input kgarchar I suggest you go back to practicing what you preach. To all others I really appreciate you taking the time to help me with my query. Thank you.
     
  9. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #9
    I was hoping to learn where on your Mac this information might be, in case there's a way to remove just that information or secure it with a password, but there's a more generic way to do this too: save all of your files and other data to CD, DVD, an external disk, or another computer, reformat your disk in a way that erases the contents (not just marking it as "free" disk space), reinstall Mac OS X, let your neighbor sell you software and install it for you, and then restore your data.

    That method would be quite a bit of trouble (although we can help you through the steps), and has a risk that you might lose something that you fail to copy for some reason, but it is about as "foolproof" as you are likely to get with cleanup or "hiding" information.

    May I suggest another choice? What if you agree to use your neighbor's help but insist that you get to sit and watch as he works on it?
     
  10. MrSmith macrumors 68040

    MrSmith

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2003
    #10
    I don't mean to hijack this thread but on a similar thread I was wondering what kind of protection people take if they submit their machine to a shop for repair. My iMac has started the random shutdown thing (although it's behaved for a few days now) and I guess at some stage it will have to go in. Should I delete keychains now and is it OK to deposit the machine with 'Require password to wake from sleep or screeen saver' activated? Anything else to think about? Again, sorry to hijack but I thought this additional info fits the theme of the thread.
     
  11. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    #11
    You should provide a second administrator account for them to use to be able to log in and make sure thinks are working normally.
     
  12. MrSmith macrumors 68040

    MrSmith

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2003
    #12
    Thanks WildCowboy. :)
     
  13. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #13
    I assume the following:
    • Apple employees could find almost any information you have on your Mac, unless it is encrypted.
    • They are unlikely to do so.
    • A Mac turned in for service may end up needing the disk replaced, so you need a copy of your data somewhere else. Therefore, you don't really need your data on the Mac you send in.
    Therefore, the degree of prevention depends on how worried you are and how private the data is.

    I wouldn't leave my social security or credit card numbers in a plain text file, even with a promise of privacy, but I wouldn't expect I had to erase all my personal mail either.
     
  14. MrSmith macrumors 68040

    MrSmith

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2003
    #14
    Thanks again, Doctor Q.

    One question WildCowboy - I created another Admin account ready just in case (for the first time ever) but that still leaves full access to my stuff via the Users folder. So...I don't see the point :confused:
     
  15. alacea thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2006
    #15
    Thank you all

    Doctor Q I am going to go with your suggestion of sitting with my neighbor while he installs the software, that way I can maybe learn something, as well as not worrying about the privacy issue. Great idea, no clue why I didn't think of that myself, :cool: I'm obviously too technically challenged at this point to do any of the other stuff suggested. Thank you all once again for taking the time to help me out, I really appreciate it. I'm sure I'll be back here many more times in the future and who knows maybe one day I'll be able to answer some questions. :D
     

Share This Page