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Thread: Windows? Secure? Don't make me laugh!

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    Regular Member SignumPhil's Avatar
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    Default Windows? Secure? Don't make me laugh!

    I spend all my life in the wonderful world of IT, mostly working with Unix stuff, so I've rarely had much involvement with Windows and it's little quirks. However, I had an issue with my laptop yesterday, and had to get a medieval on it's a$$.
    I'd done something daft, and locked myself out of it (for the techies here, I needed to move it from our parent company's domain, into ours. We have a local IT guy, who's not around this week, and the parent company's IT staff are useless, so I used my local admin rights to pull it out of their domain, rebooted, then realized that I had no idea what the local admin password was for the laptop, so I couldn't log back in to move it into the right domain!)
    I spent 10 minutes Googling, 5 minutes downloading and cracked it in 5 minutes!
    So, if you have a laptop, with stuff which you may not want made public on it, find a way to secure it other than Windows login!

    Phil

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    Regular Member lofty's Avatar
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    Most O/S's are insecure when you have local access, disk encryption is a wise move for laptops (he says writing on his unsecured IBM notebook)..

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    [Ex]Admin Duncan's Avatar
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    Bizarrely I believe that if you haven't set a local Admin password it's actually more secure as those apps don't then work!!

    One of the reasons I bought the Toshiba laptop I did was for some of it's security features - one being a password required for the laptop to even do anything when you open it up. If you haven't got that it won't do anything - won't allow you to boot from a CD, SD card, won't even start to fire up Windows - nothing. Forget it and you're stuffed! lol

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    Regular Member lofty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duncan View Post
    Bizarrely I believe that if you haven't set a local Admin password it's actually more secure as those apps don't then work!!

    One of the reasons I bought the Toshiba laptop I did was for some of it's security features - one being a password required for the laptop to even do anything when you open it up. If you haven't got that it won't do anything - won't allow you to boot from a CD, SD card, won't even start to fire up Windows - nothing. Forget it and you're stuffed! lol
    Yep, setting a bios password is also a handy delaying tactic.. but sometimes only requires the motherboard battery being removed for a while (although, I'm sure your Tosh will be something a bit better than that).

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    Regular Member VectraV6CDTi's Avatar
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    Our company uses software called Safeboot for all our laptops. It encripts the disk and unless you know the username/password to get in to it the disk is useless. i.e. if you tried to remove the disk and read it from another PC, it wouldnt work.

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    [Ex]Admin Duncan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lofty69 View Post
    ...(although, I'm sure your Tosh will be something a bit better than that).
    It is. It's not a BIOS password, it's actually a HDD password. Something on the HDD itself that won't let any other activity occur until the password is entered. I'm sure if somebody was determined enough they could remove the HDD and hook it up as a second drive on another PC and possibly crack it - but they'd have to believe that there was significant information on the drive to go to that effort (which there isn't! lol)

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    Encryption. Encryption. Encryption.

    Oh, and sensible passwords/keys.

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    Regular Member lofty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duncan View Post
    It is. It's not a BIOS password, it's actually a HDD password. Something on the HDD itself that won't let any other activity occur until the password is entered. I'm sure if somebody was determined enough they could remove the HDD and hook it up as a second drive on another PC and possibly crack it - but they'd have to believe that there was significant information on the drive to go to that effort (which there isn't! lol)
    ah yes, I've come across this one.. had a disk given to me with it on.. needless to say I give up trying to get around it and binned the disk.

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    [Ex]Admin Duncan's Avatar
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    Ah, that sounds encouraging i.e.it doesn't sound like it's a piece of cake to get around it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stevedee3 View Post
    Encryption. Encryption. Encryption.
    e.g. TrueCrypt

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