Computer stolen - what do I do?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by MrSmith, Mar 17, 2006.

  1. MrSmith macrumors 68040


    Nov 27, 2003
    Hi all,

    My computer was stolen in the early hours from my office. What do I have to do regarding passwords, mail, etc? Thanks for any help. It kind of shakes you up, this kind of thing :(
  2. quigleybc macrumors 68030


    Jun 17, 2005
    Beautiful Vancouver British Columbia, Canada

    I don't have any advice, but since no one else has posted anything, I thought I'd just pop in and say "I'm sorry that happened to you."

  3. MrSmith thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 27, 2003
    Thanks a lot. I appreciate that.

    Where are all these usually-prolific posters when you need them?
  4. emaja macrumors 68000

    May 3, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Sorry, dude.

    Not too much you really can do. Go online and change as many of your passwords as you can as quickly as you can.

    ...and call the police of course - but you already knew that.
  5. cyberddot macrumors 6502


    Jul 4, 2003
    in a forest
    Does your mac require a login? If so, and as long as you were creative, you should be fine, unless the person that stole the computer happens to be more skilled with apple products than one would expect. They probably stole the computer to sell it for the money that the hardware brings, not to see if they can find anything valuable beyond the login. Unless your job involves something that would draw that kind of criminal!?:eek:

    What is it that you're hoping to recover from, or protect on the computer that you no longer have? If you didn't require a login or have any other form of security that keeps someone from logging into your computer, and you're hoping to keep cached passwords to web-mail or billing accounts protected, can you use a friend's computer (a good friend) to change your login information?

    That doesn't help much with personal information that may otherwise be easily accessed on the computer itself though. :(
  6. TurboLag macrumors member

    Feb 24, 2004
    Check eBay, I've heard many stories of people recovering their stolen possessions there.
  7. DeeJay Dan macrumors member

    Feb 28, 2006
    New York
    I'd definetly change any of the passwords you have stored on the system, email, web logins etc..
  8. MrSmith thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 27, 2003
    The buggers took my two old B&W G3 machines, so I'm not worried about having to replace them with MacMinis ;) ...provided the insurance company pay up...but I was concerned about the online stuff. I've got client/financial information on a web database I set up, so I changed the passwords on that. I'm in the process of changing the passwords on my mail accounts. Presumably they could plug my machine in anywhere and download my mail, since the account details are stored in Outlook Express. Presumably where you access it from doesn't matter. That is the most unsettling thought... There's no government secrets on there and I assume no-one will go through my email and write obnoxious letters on my behalf. But they shouldn't be able to if I change the password, should they.

    Hopefully got all my bases covered. Thanks for all your help guys.
  9. killuminati macrumors 68020


    Dec 6, 2004
    I would go around to any local pawn shops, check the classifieds, check craigslist (if you have it).

    I'm really sorry, I know how awful it feels. :(
  10. EricNau Moderator emeritus


    Apr 27, 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    I've heard you can have Apple put it on their stolen list, and if anyone ever brings it in for service, they'll contact you.
  11. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Did you back your isht up?

    And while it seems like a major pain in the arse, I need to enter a password whenever my computer awakes from sleep. No thief is going to expect to steal a computer from a person so anal that he actually requires a password for his own personal computer. :p

    Actually, the reason we all have passwords on our computers at Uni is because I don't want my friends changing my desktop image or playing any practical jokes if I leave my computer for a second. I've used my friends' computer to send himself emails saying things like: "Hi guys, I don't know if you knew this before, but I've been sleeping with my sister for the past 8 years and the sex has been amazing. That is all. Love Joe." :D

    Never leave your computer in the presence of my friends unless you have a password set up. Gay porn desktop images will quickly follow if you don't listen.

    Where was I? Oh yes, sorry for your loss. You should get it covered under your home insurance if you can next time. I did, and my 12" PB is covered for all damage, theft, or even if you just lost the darned thing. Coverage costs an extra $10 per year.
  12. 2nyRiggz macrumors 603


    Aug 20, 2005
    Thank you Jah...I'm so Blessed
    Call the cops...thats all u can do....sorry to hear man.

  13. DeeJay Dan macrumors member

    Feb 28, 2006
    New York

    Depends if your smtp server (outgoing mail) requires authentication. If it does and you changed the password there is nothing to worry about. If not they'll be able to send mail from your address.

    I really wouldn't worry about them doing stuff like that. More than likely it was some low life creep looking for something so he can score come crack.
  14. MrSmith thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 27, 2003
    Phew. I'm back. Thanks for your posts. Times like this a forum comes into its own. I appreciate that.

    Well, the police came and left fingerprint powder all over my carpet. Being burgled is an unsettling experience. If someone pinches your TV you just write it off, claim the insurance, and buy a new one (not to belittle it). But having a computer stolen is iike having your diary stolen. Materially, the thieves took two old G3 machines and keyboards, etc, that I wanted to replace anyway if I had the money, and two screens (one very cheap, the other on its last legs) so the material loss is negligible provided the insurance company pays up. But what are they going to pay on 6-year old G3s if they know anything about computers!? What I want, of course, is the money to replace them with new machines but what they will no doubt pay for is the cost of the items, i.e. not a lot. If so, what have I been paying insurance premiums for? Well, that's another story.

    Anyway, I changed as many passwords as I could remember - yes, including the mail servers. I did that this morning and everything seemed to be OK. Them came home tonight and tried to download mail and got nothing but 'authentication error'. Eventually got that sorted after nearly going mad [It's times like this I look back with fondness on the times when 'computer' meant 'ZX81' and 'Spectrum' meant cutting edge.] I had two computers in the room (both gone) and a lot of my backing up was to the other one. The most important stuff went to a server, though. I don't think (hope) I lost too much, but here's another example of the necessity to back up OFF SiTE. But other lessons learnt are to NOT 'remember this password' (in future I'll type it in every time) and to use a laptop away from home (i.e. bring it home every night).

    I hope the guys who stole my stuff get crabs.

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