It was about two weeks ago, news broke out from tumblr. A guy has finally recovered his stolen MacBook after almost two month gone missing in the wild. Through the two month, a lot interesting things have happened. The MacBook’s owner used a special tracking software to keep tracking where the MacBook is, who’s using the MacBook, what are they doing with his MacBook. All of which he post screenshots, webcam photos of the person who stolen his computer on the tumblr blog. Detail, can be viewed here http://thisguyhasmymacbook.tumblr.com/
The amount of personal information the owner has on the person who stolen his computer was unbelievably high. In the end he knows which bank he goes, the bank account number, what does he look like, his job and almost everything possible you ever want to know about this person is there in front of him.
Since the story break it has been raised for some serious questions on whether it is right to use such software to tracking your own personal computer when “stolen” by others.
From an owner point of view, there is nothing wrong to add an extra measure of defense to your computer. In the actual story this person used a paid software for Mac only, here let me share with you a better solution on How to Keep tracking your personal computer and How to recover them if they are missing, lost, or stolen.
Introducing Prey, a free open source application combine with a powerful web user control settings to let you gain access to your own computer’s webcam, user session, screenshot, history etc if it’s been missing.
After you download and install the software on your computer, you need to create an account and authenticate to let the website tracking your machine. When your computer is missing, you can use the web control panel to tell it to have a missing status. From that on, if you are lucky you should have access to your computer, assuming they didn’t wipe the hard drive or re-installing the OS.
If for some reason your computer is gone missing, and the person who stolen your computer has successfully manage to reset the user account password on your computer and login to your computer. You can report the computer to be missing, and whenever there is any new information Prey has collected it will send email alert and notifications to you.
Give Prey a try, if you are interested, but the best suggestions is always to keep your computer in a safe location. Especially if it contains your important personal data, the least you want is to use such tool to try to recover your device back. In the case of the guy who found this missing MacBook, he was lucky, stories like this is still to be the minority. The best advice is to be cautious.