CompuTrace & Theft Recovery Programs

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by mandizzle, Jan 19, 2010.

  1. mandizzle macrumors member

    mandizzle

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2010
    Location:
    Southeast MA
    #1
    Was wondering if anyone had any experience and/or opinions on this program from LoJack or if you would recommend a different one? It almost seems worth it to me to purchase just for the $1,000 replace guarantee alone, if the stolen computer is not located within 30 days and they don't find you liable for the theft (IE leaving it in the car or leaving it in the open and walking away from it, etc.)

    thanks! :)
     
  2. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    #2
    lojack for mac is so completely epically useless since it doesn't hook into the bios or anything. It's just a program that can be wiped. If your adversary (using trucrypt terms) removes the drive and replaces it then it's done for.
     
  3. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

    Joined:
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    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #3
    Most thieves don't do this. For 95% of thieves the number one goal is to resell it as soon as possible. They don't remove the hard drive.

    I recommend Undercover. It succeeded in helping to recover my stolen macbook pro.
     
  4. Habitus macrumors 6502a

    Habitus

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    Location:
    Where ever my life takes me...
    #4
    I purchased lojack for my gf's Mac. I recommend it, personally. As the previous poster suggested; some thieves may be savvy enough to remove the drive, thus countering the effectiveness of lojack. However, I doubt the average thief would know to perform this; given the transparency (i.e., you'd have to scour the Mac for lojack) of lojack in the Mac OS.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but it's definitely worth it. Especially on a college campus.

    Habitus :apple:
     
  5. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    #5
    Right they are out for the resale but assuming that the user puts a password on their account (as we all should). The new buyer would have a shiny new MacBook pro with someone elses locked account. Not for long though. Maybe useless was incorrect . It isn't useless, but like solving murder cases, after the first 48 hours it's probably much harder to recover.

    I personally would focus more on data security than theft recovery . Theft recovery is much more robust on an iPhone because gps + cellular, but the stars have to align In either instance. My mbp Is covered by statefarm with what is essentially a one time get out of jail free card. The first time I can make a claim with no deductible , but after that my premiums and deductibles skyrocket.

    Right they are out for the resale but assuming that the user puts a password on their account (as we all should). The new buyer would have a shiny new MacBook pro with someone elses locked account. Not for long though. Maybe useless was incorrect . It isn't useless, but like solving murder cases, after the first 48 hours it's probably much harder to recover.

    I personally would focus more on data security than theft recovery . Theft recovery is much more robust on an iPhone because gps + cellular, but the stars have to align In either instance. My mbp Is covered by statefarm with what is essentially a one time get out of jail free card. The first time I can make a claim with no deductible , but after that my premiums and deductibles skyrocket.
     
  6. mandizzle thread starter macrumors member

    mandizzle

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2010
    Location:
    Southeast MA
    #6
    Undercover seems okay, but they do not have the guarantee that if they can't find your computer they will give you a check for all of or up to $1000 value so you can replace the stolen laptop (or at least, from what I could see). that's the only reason really I would want it, to be honest.

    I mean, correct me if I'm wrong, but if someone wants to steal my info, they could always do that without having the comp in their possession if they were smart enough? plus everything I need is burned onto backup discs in case I needed to get a replacement if this one was stolen. would it be a pain in the ass? sure, but at least I wouldn't be completely out minus one Macbook.
     
  7. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

    Joined:
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    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #7
    Undercover is a one-time price. LoJack you get to pay by the year.
     
  8. mandizzle thread starter macrumors member

    mandizzle

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2010
    Location:
    Southeast MA
    #8
    ^ yes, I know, but that's not my point. my point is that I think it's worth getting because of the replacement policy. Undercover doesn't seem to have that, unless I'm missing something?
     
  9. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

    Joined:
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    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #9
    ::shrug:: Person choice, mostly. The only reason they have the replacement policy is because they hardly ever have to pay it out, meanwhile keeping you tied down with an expensive subscription for possibly years.
     
  10. mandizzle thread starter macrumors member

    mandizzle

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2010
    Location:
    Southeast MA
    #10
    I'll have to keep checking into all of the options. I just would hate to lose this laptop forever if it were stolen but to be told "sorry we couldn't find it - here's the refund for your subscription to our service only" :(
     
  11. dshj macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    #11
    Read the fine print...

    One thing about Absolute is that in order for them to pay out on the $1k payment, your machine needs to "call-in" to their center at least once AFTER you've reported it stolen.

    I've had a Windows laptop recovered using this service, and the Windows side of the service works much better in that it embeds itself in the BIOS. A hard drive replacement will only make the agent reconstruct itself on the new drive. On a Mac, you don't have this option, so...be warned.

    If someone chucks the Mac, you don't get $1k. If they're smart and they replace the HDD, you don't get the $1k. And think about it, how are they going to "log in" to the network for the machine to "call-in" if they can't get into your password protected Mac?

    The $1k is a Marketing tool. For Windows machines, I highly recommend CompuTrace Complete (the product on the Windows side). For Mac, just save your money for a new product or have good insurance.

    As for my "recovery" experience, it took two months before the laptop called into Absolute's center. Even though I could track it from the console, I couldn't do anything until Absolute recovered the laptop...a month later. You would think they would work faster on these things, and maybe they ran into problems in the local jurisdiction (Las Vegas), but it seemed that they sure took a LONG time to do anything about recovering my laptop. Hell, it took them three weeks to even acknowledge that it had called in, and I'd seen that already from my monitoring of the service. Still, we got the laptop back.
     

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