Laptop Security?

Discussion in 'Computer Security' started by Paul Anderson, Jun 11, 2004.

  1. I want to make sure that if my laptop is stolen no private data (credit card, banking,
    private documents etc) can be viewed. I have read that the password protection in Windows
    is next to useless.

    I have looked around for software to protect my personal details stored in Windows. But I
    can only find software that will provide me with a separate drive or folder that is secure
    to store documents within.

    Ideally I would like to prevent access to ANY files including the operating system so all
    my data stored on the disk is secure. Is there any software out there that can do this?

    Thanks, Paul.
    Paul Anderson, Jun 11, 2004
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. Paul Anderson

    Giel Guest

    "Paul Anderson" <> wrote in message
    news:40c9df3f$0$6339$...
    > I want to make sure that if my laptop is stolen no private data (credit

    card, banking,
    > private documents etc) can be viewed. I have read that the password

    protection in Windows
    > is next to useless.
    >
    > I have looked around for software to protect my personal details stored in

    Windows. But I
    > can only find software that will provide me with a separate drive or

    folder that is secure
    > to store documents within.
    >
    > Ideally I would like to prevent access to ANY files including the

    operating system so all
    > my data stored on the disk is secure. Is there any software out there that

    can do this?
    >
    > Thanks, Paul.

    Search for harddisk encryption programs, i believe even symantec has
    something.
    But i've no experiance with them.

    my best guess is to tie a bomb on it with a securitycode.

    Giel

    --
    __________________________________________________
    THINK positive STAY negative!
    ADBlocker at http://nina.xs4all.nl/pac
    Securityscan at http://nina.xs4all.nl/scan
    WhoIs at http://nina.xs4all.nl/whois.htm
    __________________________________________________
    don't click here http://nina.xs4all.nl/spammers_will_be_punished/reply.plx
    Giel, Jun 11, 2004
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. Paul Anderson

    *Vanguard* Guest

    Paul Anderson said in news:40c9df3f$0$6339$:
    > I want to make sure that if my laptop is stolen no private data
    > (credit card, banking, private documents etc) can be viewed. I have
    > read that the password protection in Windows is next to useless.
    >
    > I have looked around for software to protect my personal details
    > stored in Windows. But I can only find software that will provide me
    > with a separate drive or folder that is secure to store documents
    > within.
    >
    > Ideally I would like to prevent access to ANY files including the
    > operating system so all my data stored on the disk is secure. Is
    > there any software out there that can do this?
    >
    > Thanks, Paul.


    In another discussion, a user mentioned using SafeBoot. It replaces the
    bootstrap program in the MBR (master boot record) on the hard drive.
    The entire drive gets encrypted. This is different than using EFS
    (encrypted file system).

    EFS will encrypt the files so someone moving the drive to another
    computer under which the account SIDs are not defined won't be able to
    bypass the permissions assigned to those SIDs. Using accounts to assign
    permissions is only obeyed within the instance of Windows in which those
    persmissions were defined (except for Administrator which gets the same
    SID, security identifier, under each NT-based version of Windows).
    Obviously permissions come into play only if NTFS was used; FAT
    partitions don't know permissions. Unless the hacker has the exported
    certificate (and can import it) then decrypting the encrypted files
    would be more work than its probably worth.

    However, if the hacker manages to get your login info (username and
    password) then all EFS-protected files and folders become usable to the
    hacker. SafeBoot, or anything usurping the bootstrap code, doesn't rely
    on the operating system for its primary protection. But because it
    usurps the bootstrap code in the MBR means you cannot use other MBR
    usurping programs, like a boot manager, GoBack, disk overlay, and other
    MBR-residing utilities (although, according to SafeBoot, it moves out
    the prior bootstrap program and will load it after it loads its own
    bootstrap program).

    While it may sound better to step back even further and use password
    protection in the BIOS (presuming that it cannot simply be cleared by
    shorting a jumper on the motherboard to clear it out back to the default
    of no password), that would not protect the hard drive from getting
    moved into another system that could read the files. I suppose it is
    possible to move the protection back into the hardware if that hardware
    uniquely encrypted all storage media unless otherwise specified (like
    you need to share a CD-R or floppy). Since your sensitive data is very
    likely just on the hard drive than it is sufficient to use a bootstrap
    security product that encrypts your drive.


    --
    ____________________________________________________________
    *** Post replies to newsgroup. Share with others.
    *** Email domain = ".com" *AND* append "=NEWS=" to Subject.
    ____________________________________________________________
    *Vanguard*, Jun 11, 2004
    #3
  4. On Fri, 11 Jun 2004 17:44:27 GMT, "*Vanguard*"
    <-Reply.obey-signature.invalid> wrote:

    >Paul Anderson said in news:40c9df3f$0$6339$:
    >> I want to make sure that if my laptop is stolen no private data
    >> (credit card, banking, private documents etc) can be viewed. I have
    >> read that the password protection in Windows is next to useless.
    >>
    >> I have looked around for software to protect my personal details
    >> stored in Windows. But I can only find software that will provide me
    >> with a separate drive or folder that is secure to store documents
    >> within.
    >>
    >> Ideally I would like to prevent access to ANY files including the
    >> operating system so all my data stored on the disk is secure. Is
    >> there any software out there that can do this?
    >>
    >> Thanks, Paul.

    >

    snip
    >
    >While it may sound better to step back even further and use password
    >protection in the BIOS (presuming that it cannot simply be cleared by
    >shorting a jumper on the motherboard to clear it out back to the default
    >of no password), that would not protect the hard drive from getting
    >moved into another system that could read the files. I suppose it is
    >possible to move the protection back into the hardware if that hardware
    >uniquely encrypted all storage media unless otherwise specified (like
    >you need to share a CD-R or floppy). Since your sensitive data is very
    >likely just on the hard drive than it is sufficient to use a bootstrap
    >security product that encrypts your drive.


    It might also depend on who made the laptop, when I was working for
    IBM a while back all the laptops had 3 (I think) BIOS passwords. 1)
    power on, 2) entering the BIOS, and 3) harddrive. On some/all of the
    models the power on password could be bypassed but the BIOS and
    harddrive passwords could not be bypassed. Even if you took the part
    out of the machine and installed it in another one.

    The downside was if you forgot either of the 2 passwords the system
    would be useless.

    Check with the mfg or the manual to see if it has something like that.

    Jeff
    Jeffrey Schwartz, Jun 12, 2004
    #4
  5. Paul Anderson

    N1POP Guest

    Jeffrey Schwartz <> wrote in
    news::

    > It might also depend on who made the laptop, when I was working for
    > IBM a while back all the laptops had 3 (I think) BIOS passwords. 1)
    > power on, 2) entering the BIOS, and 3) harddrive.


    Certain models from Dell also have this feature. The password is stored on
    the drive itself and cannot be bypassed. Even Dell won't assist unless you
    can prove beyond doubt that you are the rightful owner of the laptop/hard
    drive combination (serials for both laptop and HD must match is the first
    step).
    N1POP, Jun 12, 2004
    #5
  6. Paul Anderson

    Jim Watt Guest

    On 12 Jun 2004 19:01:10 GMT, N1POP <> wrote:

    >Jeffrey Schwartz <> wrote in
    >news::
    >
    >> It might also depend on who made the laptop, when I was working for
    >> IBM a while back all the laptops had 3 (I think) BIOS passwords. 1)
    >> power on, 2) entering the BIOS, and 3) harddrive.

    >
    >Certain models from Dell also have this feature. The password is stored on
    >the drive itself and cannot be bypassed. Even Dell won't assist unless you
    >can prove beyond doubt that you are the rightful owner of the laptop/hard
    >drive combination (serials for both laptop and HD must match is the first
    >step).


    its actually part of the ATA3 feature set so any manufacturer using
    modern drives can implement it and its very hard to get round.
    Indeed IBM say it can't.
    --
    Jim Watt
    http://www.gibnet.com
    Jim Watt, Jun 12, 2004
    #6
  7. Paul Anderson

    Rod & Jarie Guest

    Paul
    Two products that I support for security
    PGP Desktop you can created PGP Disk that will protect your Documents
    And PointSec for complete protection


    "Paul Anderson" <> wrote in message
    news:40c9df3f$0$6339$...
    > I want to make sure that if my laptop is stolen no private data (credit

    card, banking,
    > private documents etc) can be viewed. I have read that the password

    protection in Windows
    > is next to useless.
    >
    > I have looked around for software to protect my personal details stored in

    Windows. But I
    > can only find software that will provide me with a separate drive or

    folder that is secure
    > to store documents within.
    >
    > Ideally I would like to prevent access to ANY files including the

    operating system so all
    > my data stored on the disk is secure. Is there any software out there that

    can do this?
    >
    > Thanks, Paul.
    Rod & Jarie, Jun 12, 2004
    #7
  8. Paul Anderson

    athegates Guest

    Whole disk encrption is the best answer to the issue. Since your point on
    windows security is not hammer proof if laptop is lost/stolen.

    I'd suggest Drivecrypt plus as my personal preference.

    Dan

    "Paul Anderson" <> wrote in message
    news:40c9df3f$0$6339$...
    > I want to make sure that if my laptop is stolen no private data (credit

    card, banking,
    > private documents etc) can be viewed. I have read that the password

    protection in Windows
    > is next to useless.
    >
    > I have looked around for software to protect my personal details stored in

    Windows. But I
    > can only find software that will provide me with a separate drive or

    folder that is secure
    > to store documents within.
    >
    > Ideally I would like to prevent access to ANY files including the

    operating system so all
    > my data stored on the disk is secure. Is there any software out there that

    can do this?
    >
    > Thanks, Paul.
    athegates, Jun 13, 2004
    #8
    1. Advertising

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

It takes just 2 minutes to sign up (and it's free!). Just click the sign up button to choose a username and then you can ask your own questions on the forum.
Similar Threads
  1. AM
    Replies:
    4
    Views:
    750
  2. Replies:
    0
    Views:
    645
  3. Rick Sears
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    491
    Rick Sears
    Jul 29, 2003
  4. COMSOLIT Messmer

    IT-Security, Security, e-security

    COMSOLIT Messmer, Sep 5, 2003, in forum: Computer Support
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    579
    COMSOLIT Messmer
    Sep 5, 2003
  5. rafael
    Replies:
    7
    Views:
    1,713
    Jack \(MVP-Networking\).
    Jan 21, 2008
Loading...

Share This Page