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Identity Theft Protection Expert and MyLaptopGPS: Computer Thefts Affect College Students and Highlight Need for Better Laptop Security

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(BOSTON, Mass. – May 15, 2008 – IDTheftSecurity.com) Last month, reports of one laptop computer stolen from an IT company that caters to colleges across New York State left thousands of students at possible risk of identity theft and other crimes. But simple technology from MyLaptopGPS that resides on mobile computers could have greatly minimized the potential fallout, said Robert Siciliano, a widely televised and quoted personal security and identity theft protection expert who urged educational institutions to equip their fleets of mobile computing devices with MyLaptopGPS’ antitheft security.

“Laptop computers are prime targets for thieves,” said Siciliano. “And with that comes the danger that identity thieves will then use the robust identifying information that universities and colleges tend to leave stored on the machines. Smart educational institutions protect their mobile computing equipment with theft prevention technology.”

CEO of IDTheftSecurity.com and a member of the Bank Fraud & IT Security Report‘s editorial board, Siciliano leads Fortune 500 companies and their clients through consumer education workshops that explore security solutions for business and individuals. A longtime identity theft protection speaker and author of “The Safety Minute: 01,” he has discussed data security and consumer protection on CNBC, on NBC’s “Today Show,” FOX Newschannel, and elsewhere.

Late in April, multiple sources reported that a laptop computer had been stolen from New York State–based software company SunGard Higher Education, an outsourced IT provider to numerous educational institutions. The purloined machine left many thousands of current and former students at Meridian Community College, Buffalo State, Brockport, and Monroe Community College at risk of identity theft; according to reports, all these colleges had contracted for IT services with the firm, whose machine housed identifying information on their students.

“Why would I send my college student to school and then not protect her critical coursework, and even her identity, on her laptop at campus?” asked Fred Weamer, a father who installed MyLaptopGPS on his daughter’s laptop computer before she left for college. “MyLaptopGPS is a rock solid service and keeps my mind at ease while my daughter earns her degree.”

MyLaptopGPS combines Internet-based GPS tracking — which, for tracking and retrieving stolen laptops, is more effective than other forms of GPS — with other functionalities to secure mobile computing devices. Users launch MyLaptopGPS’ features remotely, protecting data even while the machine is in a criminal’s hands. Once connected to the Internet, the software silently retrieves, and then deletes, files from machines as it tracks the stolen or missing hardware — at once returning the data to its rightful owner and removing it from the lost computer.

Additionally, MyLaptopGPS offers SafeRegistry™, a comprehensive system for inventorying entire fleets of mobile computers, as well as a full line of highly renowned SafeTags™, which are police-traceable property tags designed to secure iPods, cell phones, BlackBerry devices, and other mobile property.

Readers may download a demo of MyLaptopGPS. A white paper is also available.

At its website, MyLaptopGPS keeps a running tally, the Realtime Estimated Damage Index (REDI), of publicized laptop and desktop computer theft and losses. The REDI also assesses those losses’ associated costs by drawing on estimates from the FBI and elsewhere reflecting the likelihood that identity theft and other crimes will occur whenever a laptop is misplaced or stolen. On May 15, that tally was 411 units and the cost associated with it $355,642,050, an amount representing a 70 percent increase in cost since the REDI’s launch just three months ago.

“Since February, thefts have been tracking to at least double in frequency over year 2007,” said Dan Yost, chief technology officer at MyLaptopGPS. “But, with the latest results of the REDI now in, the year-over-year increase in the financial consequences of computer theft may in fact be a tripling or more.”

The YouTube video below shows Siciliano on “FOX Newschannel,” where he discusses the recent data security breach at Hannaford Bros. and provides affected consumers with the tips they need to avoid paying for fraudulent charges to their bank accounts and credit accounts. To learn more about identity theft, a major concern for anyone who’s lost a laptop computer to thieves, readers may go to video of Siciliano at VideoJug.

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About MyLaptopGPS™

Since 1984, Tri-8, Inc. (DBA MyLaptopGPS.com) has specialized in complete system integration. From real-time electronic payment processing software to renowned mid-market ERP implementations, the executive team at MyLaptopGPS has been serving leading enterprises and implementing world-class data systems that simply work. With MyLaptopGPS™, Tri-8, Inc. brings a level of expertise, dedication, knowledge and service that is unmatched. MyLaptopGPS™’s rock-solid performance, security, and reliability flow directly from the company’s commitment to top-notch software products and services for almost 25 years.

About IDTheftSecurity.com

Identity theft affects us all, and Robert Siciliano, CEO of IDTheftSecurity.com and member of the Bank Fraud & IT Security Report‘s editorial board, makes it his mission to provide consumer education solutions on identity theft to Fortune 500 companies and their clients. A leader of personal safety and security seminars nationwide, Siciliano has been featured on “The Today Show,” CNN, MSNBC, CNBC, “FOX News,” “The Suze Orman Show,” “The Montel Williams Show,” “Maury Povich,” “Sally Jesse Raphael,” “The Howard Stern Show,” and “Inside Edition.” The Privacy Learning Institute features him on its Website. Numerous magazines, print news outlets, and wire services have turned to him, as well, for expert commentary on personal security and identity theft. These include Forbes, USA Today, Entrepreneur, Woman’s Day, Mademoiselle, Good Housekeeping, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Times, The Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, United Press International, Reuters, and others.

For more information, visit Siciliano’s Web site, blog, and YouTube page.

The media are encouraged to get in touch with any of the following individuals:

John Dunivan
MyLaptopGPS Media Relations
PHONE: (405) 747-6654 (direct line)
jd@MyLaptopGPS.com
www.MyLaptopGPS.com

Robert Siciliano, Personal Security Expert
CEO of IDTheftSecurity.com
PHONE: 888-SICILIANO (742-4542)
FAX: 877-2-FAX-NOW (232-9669)
Robert@IDTheftSecurity.com
www.idtheftsecurity.com

Brent W. Skinner
President & CEO of STETrevisions
PHONE: 617-875-4859
FAX: 866-663-6557
BrentSkinner@STETrevisions.biz
www.STETrevisions.biz

About the Author
ROBERT SICILIANO, CEO of IDTheftSecurity.com is fiercely committed to informing, educating, and empowering Americans so they can be protected from violence and crime in the physical and virtual worlds. His "tell it like it is" style is sought after by major media outlets, executives in the C-Suite of leading corporations, meeting planners, and community leaders to get the straight talk they need to stay safe in a world in which physical and virtual crime is commonplace. Siciliano is accessible, real, professional, and ready to weigh in and comment at a moment's notice on breaking news.

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