These days, many offices and other workspaces are nearly empty as employees work from home. This can make companies that don’t safeguard their computers, printers and other equipment vulnerable to theft from outsiders. Even during normal times, businesses often lose assets because crooked employees walk out with them. Here’s how to protect valuable property — no matter who’s eyeing it.
First, claim your business’s assets. This means adding security plates and indelible identity markings to machines. These additions can help you track stolen equipment, inhibit resale and discourage thieves from trying to steal in the first place.
Security software can help you track stolen computers online. As soon as the thief connects to the Internet, the computer’s software contacts a security firm’s monitoring system, which traces the machine’s current IP address. To locate a physical address, firms use GPS and Wi-Fi tracking. However, there can be legal obstacles to obtaining the actual address of a thief, so discuss them with your attorney.
Most computers and mobile devices also can be tracked by sites and apps such as Gmail and Dropbox, which capture the IP addresses of users when they log into accounts. Apple products can be tracked using iCloud, and Windows has a “Find My Device” feature. Provide the police with any information you gather about your stolen equipment’s location.
To keep desktop computers and other machines where they belong, lock them down with cables and attach motion sensor alarms. Consider using locked steel cases bolted to desktops. If you prefer not to drill holes in furniture, you can attach super-strength adhesive security pads to desks or other furniture to discourage thieves from lifting the equipment off the surface.
If you store many laptops and mobile devices on your premises, lock them in heavy-duty cabinets or carts when not in use.
Protecting what’s yours
Finally, make it harder for anyone to leave your building with equipment by having building security ask for written removal authorization. To prevent the use of fake documents, require security guards to call you or your office manager for confirmation.
We highly recommend you confer with your Miller Kaplan advisor to understand your specific situation and how this may impact you.