Five ways to keep laptop thieves from jacking your data

Laptops are more prevalent today than they have ever been. Everywhere you look, there are notebooks of every kind-tiny netbooks, monster laptops, and everything in between. With such an explosion in notebook use, there are that many more targets for thieves looking to pawn our stuff for a quick buck, or even worse, steal our data for more nefarious uses.

In the case of one laptop user profiled by the Telegraph, a thief might even make use of your laptop's login credentials to taunt you right from your own virtual identities. UK resident Victoria Richardson's house was broken into and her laptop and iPhone stolen; the same day, her Facebook account was hijacked by the burglar, who then posted status updates to Richardson's Facebook wall mocking her about the stolen wares. This is a creepy reminder that once your laptop is stolen, in most cases, a burglar can access almost anything on it-that is, unless you take the right precautions with the extremely mobile window into your life.

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