Laptop Repair: How to Protect Privacy?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air, MacBook & MacBook Pro' started by wlvn, Aug 13, 2009.

  1. wlvn

    wlvn Member

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    Hi everyone, my mac just suddenly died today and I'm now planning to have it checked/repaired at one of the Apple's authorized service providers here in the metro tomorrow. So my question is: How safe are my files from being download/copied by the technician who's going to repair my mac? I have files and passwords that I don't want people to see. So what can I do to protect my files since my mac won't even start properly anymore. TIA.
     
  2. rowinms

    rowinms Member

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    if you have the chance .. mount it via firewire. try to browse and copy all the data if you can, then format the HDD. 7 0 pass?
     
  3. ditoy_eagle

    ditoy_eagle Well-Known Member

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    I think if your account just has a password, then don't give it to the technician. Just create a new ADMIN account with no password so the technician can still go into the system. But all your data should still be in-accessible since it belongs to a different and password protected home folder.

    Remember not to have your personal files in the default Macintosh HD directory where it can be accessed by any account/user. Make sure to put your personal videos in your home directory :)
     
    #3 ditoy_eagle, Aug 13, 2009
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2009
  4. primo1

    primo1 Member

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    Remove your hard disk. That's what I did with my Windoze laptop. The problem was there was just no power so I don't see the need for my hard disk while repairing it.
     
  5. RC

    RC Active Member

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    +1 on what @primo1 had said... since if you can't access your system take the hard disk out... if you don't know how, just ask the tech to take it out in front of you, or within eyesight... then just have them test with a "shop HD"

    next time around save data on an external HD so that problems like this one can just erase the HD before giving it to a service shop...

    Unless you really know the tech one can NEVER be sure that whatever data that is left behind won't be taken advantage of....
     
  6. rowinms

    rowinms Member

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    primo's suggestion is good if you own a macbook ... 2006 ..2007 but not late 2008 then onwards and a MAC PRO. otherwise warranty will be void for .. mbp .. imac .. and mac mini.

    if no more warranty to be voided .. open it up and get that HDD out. :D
     
  7. d1scjock

    d1scjock Member

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    Yeah, I agree with Primo and RC. And the service center should be able to accommodate you with taking out the HDD. If the technician refuses, don't hesitate to escalate to a manager. In my experience, the technician is just being lazy and management will gladly deal with your request.
     
  8. elbert

    elbert Active Member

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    FYI, replacing hard drives does not void warranty. It may be different for an iMac though, because special tools are necessary to replace the internal HD, but it still won't void warranty. Same goes for RAM.

    Besides, you can have the technician remove the hard drive while-you-wait when you check your unit in for repairs.

    Normally, I create a secondary admin account for purposes of troubleshooting and repairs.

    If your data is that valuable, and there is no change to replace the hard drive or create that secondary account, then you should make them work on it in front of you.
     
  9. hitme64

    hitme64 PhilMUG Addict Member

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    ahhh, the power of "secure empty trash" and "clear all private data"...

    besides, i don't keep anything on the pbook, everything goes to an external...
     
  10. lawrencebosox45

    lawrencebosox45 Active Member

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    i recently used the mail in repair for my blackbook which was having bluetooth issues. i got kinda paranoid so i just ended up using an old original HD and installed OS X. Since it was a hardware issue not involving the HD. After they replaced the bluetooth I just popped my HD back in and everything was normal.
     
  11. elbert

    elbert Active Member

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    Ahhhh, reminds me of a famous HK actor named Edison Chen
    http://www.philmug.ph/forum/showthread.php?t=49491
     
  12. Giecks888

    Giecks888 Active Member

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    OffT: Dude, you have a new shirt ah! hehehe. nice one. ;)
     
  13. wlvn

    wlvn Member

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    thank you all for the suggestions. I've decided to just bring it tomorrow to digital hub and have the technician remove the hd.
     
  14. rowinms

    rowinms Member

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    asking the technician to take off your HDD is good, IF the technician do the job on the spot ... well in front, otherwise .. still not good.
     

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