How one man used Prey and Canadian Mounties to retrieve his stolen

first_imgIn most cases, when your laptop is stolen, reporting it to the police will get you little more than a police report to use for insurance purposes. Unless you live in a tiny town where the cops don’t have anything better to do, they’re most likely not going to stop everything to try to track down your missing MacBook. Fortunately, besides locking your computer to your desk, there are ways to protect your laptop. The most frequently used method we’ve seen is an open-source option called Prey.Doug van Spronsen, a digital strategist for DDB Canada and tech blogger for Techvibes, recently had his laptop stolen and shared his story with the world about how he used Prey to get it back. Spronsen noticed his briefcase was stolen out of his car while he was unloading it at a bed and breakfast. Apparently, someone grabbed the bag between trips to the car and the room.After filing a police report, Spronsen, who lives in Alberta, Canada, had little hope that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police would actually do anything to find his missing briefcase, which also had some important work documents in it. Spronsen then remembered that he downloaded a tracking program a while back after hearing about how Sean Power used Prey back in May to recover his stolen laptop. Power also got his Twitter followers involved, but Spronsen decided to handle this on his own along with the RCMP.After logging in to Prey from his iPhone, he got an email within 10 minutes that detailed the location, a photo of the guy using his laptop, and a screenshot of the website the thief was looking at. The photos gave him enough clues to figure out what the thief’s house looked like as well as his general whereabouts. The RCMP were surprised to hear that there was a tracking device like Prey out there, but they gladly accepted Spronsen’s tip and went to investigate the thief’s apparent location.The house was empty, but the thief logged back in later and Spronsen was able to get his name from his Facebook account. Ironically, the thief was bragging to his friend on Facebook Chat about how he just bought a 17-inch laptop for $2,250. The name on the account was all the cops needed to find the crook. It seems Prey was slightly off location-wise, but it at least led them to the perpetrator eventually.Spronsen got his laptop and briefcase back which also had his iPod, GPS unit, and digital camera in it, which he said he “forgot” were also in his bag. We’re not sure how you could forget such things, but Spronsen did say he was on a wine tasting trip that weekend, so there’s that.We saw a similar case back in August when an ex-technical adviser to the FBI and Secret Service came back to his London flat shortly after the now infamous London riots only to find his 13-inch MacBook was missing. The man also used Prey to successfully track down the thief. With the help of the police he was able to recover his stolen computer, and the 18-year-old thief pleaded guilty in court to receiving stolen goods.Find out how to secure your laptop with Prey.Read more at Dougvslast_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *