Insurance replacing damaged Macbook Pro, what happens my data?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by spacedesign911, Sep 18, 2010.

  1. spacedesign911 macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2010
    Dublin, Ireland
    Hi guys, I apologise in advance if this is in the wrong section but I'm in need of some opinions regarding my Macbook Pro.

    My Macbook is only 4 weeks old but unfortunately was knocked to the ground, it would reboot but suffered a crunched up corner and severely warped chassis, fortunately I've had accidental damage cover for a few years for my laptop and so I've had no choice but to use it. (For the record I had it in a case and am very very careful but it was knocked to the ground by someone else).

    I had the device diagnosed by Apple and a report prepared which concluded that the warping was causing the battery and logic board to contact the unibody and as such the device's life was shortened due to unnatural heat build up.

    I contaced my insurance company who promptly appointed a loss adjuster to deal with the matter. Both the report and macbook where taken away overnight by the appointed loss adjuster for inspection. They then sent the macbook to a subcontracted computer repair outfit to have them issue a report. (incidentally they just rang Apple and confirmed the apple report to be true).

    The loss adjuster agreed to issue the replacement value for the Macbook. and told me I could have the damaged macbook back from their subcontractor, which would allow me retrieve my data.

    However the subcontractor refused to return the laptop citing it not to be normal practice, eventually with the intervention of the loss adjuster, it was returned to me, but now the loss adjuster has changed his mind and declared he wants the damaged laptop returned to them before issuing the replacement value, explaining that the damaged macbook has a salvage value. Fair enough.

    On return of the laptop I can see that all my fully licensed software (Adobe creative suite, Vectorworks etc) have been run, my safari used to access websites, some games have been installed, my photos accessed, and on and on. I've documented the files opened, applications run by taking screen grabs of the finder showing the last modified dates.

    Due to a current project I'm working on, I explained to the loss adjuster when taking away the macbook that I was bound to a confidentiality agreement by a client, and that design material on the laptop was private, he assured me the inspection was visual and that the laptop would not be powered up.

    I'm pleased the laptop is being replaced, without doubt, but its fair to say Im unsettled that all my serial numbers, visa card details, paypal details, login details and passwords, personal details, confidential work material etc etc have been compromised.

    I then have the hoops to jump through because a lot of high value CAD software that I have installed only allows 2 installs, (desktop and laptop) and is activated on a specific HD, I will need to go back and explain to each software supplier that I need more installs activated. Small issue I know but there is so much to do, even my $350 applecare add on is only activated 2 weeks, and is non transferable!

    With the damaged laptop returning to the loss adjuster, I'm seeking opinions on how do I deal with what happens the hard drive, sure I can wipe it, but I'd rather keep it the HD myself for peace of mind. I know my software should run without issue from that HD, The HD is apples 512gb SSD.

    Can I bounce it off you guys and hear your experiences opinions and or ideas on how to best deal with this next week.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. ljx718 macrumors 6502

    Dec 13, 2008
    you should ask if data recovery is included. costs close to a thousand...
  3. spacedesign911 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2010
    Dublin, Ireland

    I'm not sure what you mean? I have full access to my data, and have it revovered?
  4. 40167 macrumors regular

    Sep 5, 2004
    I'd pull the drive, slap something else in it and return it to the insurance company. Use a 500gb regular drive and I doubt they would notice. Yeah it's probably illegal somehow but I'm betting it's also illegal to look through your stuff when you notified them of existing confidentially agreements. You could tell them straight up that you pulled the drive, and don't replace it then, they'll probably knock some value off the laptop.

    You can also check if you can buy it back. I know you can do it with cars (in the US at least), total out a vehicle and pay them a few hundred or something and you can keep the wrecked pile.,2845,2363244,00.asp has instructions on how to get to the drive in case you didn't already know and ljx718 obviously didn't read your post, lol
  5. hikarie macrumors member

    Sep 16, 2010
    I would either buy another HD to replace it or just hook up the harddrive to another computer, transfer off the data, and format it. Isn't there a way to boot up the mac as an external drive if you connect it directly to another computer?

    As for the CAD licenses, I *think* you'll have to get those reset anyways, since I think the licenses are bound to the computer, and not the specific hard drive it's installed on (maybe the MAC address?).
  6. doktordoris macrumors 6502a


    Mar 14, 2009
    hmmm. If your data was so valuable why on earth did you hand it over to strangers?

    And, again, if it was so important why did you not have multiple back-ups?

    If I were to own crucial data there is no way I'd hand it over to someone else, I'd just swap the drive out. And if that data was so important I am sure I'd own a back-up.

    Your whole story seems a bit odd to me.
  7. paintballswimgu macrumors 6502

    Feb 13, 2010
    If you have a backup of the data, just put it in target disk mode and have it zero out the drive x amount of times. If you have legitament copies of adobe, etc. they are really good about giving you a new serial code if you call tech support.
  8. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Go buy an HDD and that's the same size as yours and then take the one out of the computer and put the new on in the bay. Or buy a broken HDD of the same size.
  9. spacedesign911 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2010
    Dublin, Ireland
    For clarity since your casting aspertions, What happened was I was out when the adjuster called, my wife gave him the laptop, I then told him there was data on board that was the subject of confidentiality aggrements, to which he informed me that the laptop would be visually inspected only.

    I have lots of backups, on site and off site. Perhaps my description is not clear but this is not about data loss, its about invasion of privacy, and how to deal with what happens the data when the damaged laptop leaves my possession. Obviously i will wipe the HD but having searched and read treads here, there appear to be many many ways to get that data back. Therefore I sought the advise on how to deal with the invasion issue, and how to keep the HD.
  10. warrmr macrumors regular

    Jul 7, 2010
    Boot from an external disk /OSX dvd and use disk utility to wipe the disk you can choose to use secure erase and the amount of passes to overwrite the data.

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