Is "Find my Mac" useless if you PW protect your machine?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by coldjeanzzz, Jun 8, 2013.

  1. coldjeanzzz macrumors 6502a

    Nov 4, 2012
    I have one account set up, just the admin account made when I bought my 2012 MBA

    I currently have "Find my Mac" enabled, but I was thinking if someone stole my MBA and I wanted to use this feature to locate it how would I do so if the thief can't even access my computer past the login screen? I know Wifi needs to be available but lets say the thief is sitting at my login screen trying to figure out a way in, would Find My Mac still work? What if I set up a guest account, would that help anything? Or what if the thief figured out how to wipe my system completely and create a new login account?

    I am curious about this because my home was recently burglarized and the idiot robber was too stupid to check my room and take my MBA so I got lucky. I didn't have Find My Mac enabled at the time so I want to know how useful it really is.
  2. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Yes, a guest account would allow a thief to login and use the Internet. What you might consider is enabling Filevault2 full disk encryption. You can turn it on in the Security and Privacy panel in System Prefs. This encrypts your entire drive so no thief can access your data, but still leaves a Safari only guest account at the login screen.

    Without FV2 turned on, it is very easy for a thief to reset your admin password and access all your data.

    But you are correct, if a thief boots to say a USB key and erases your drive, Find my Mac is out the window.

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