Top Education Theft Recoveries of 2015
- By Sydny Shepard
- Feb 09, 2016
The education sector is filled with staff, faculty, students and their technology. Ever since there have been computers, laptops and tablets in classrooms, there have been companies providing safeguards for these devices.
We’ve seen many popular trends when it comes to the recovery of educational technology but perhaps at the forefront is the ability to locate the item regardless of its condition. Absolute Software Company has been embedding their Persistence technology into the core of these learning devices as a way to combat against the increasing incidents of theft and crime in educational institutions.
When the Persistence technology is activated, it can provide a two-way connection between an end user and their device. This often leads to the recovery of stolen items and, in some cases, the person and or student with it.
Below are Absolute’s most notable stories from their 2015 recovery investigations.
Runaway Student is Safe & Sound
A student who was having trouble at home and at school ran away, taking her school laptop with her. Her parents had no idea where the teenager was and were extremely worried. Working closely with local law enforcement, Absolute investigators were able to geolocate the school device which was still in the student’s possession. Police made contact with the girl to verify that she was safe and secure, and put her in touch with her parents.
Three Strikes & You’re Out
Three desktop computers and monitors – along with other electrical equipment – were stolen from a Florida school. The school reported the burglary to Absolute and an investigation began. Post-theft, and over the course of several days, each computer came on line via the same unauthorized user. After collecting enough information to determine the location and user identity, Absolute investigators handed over the evidence to the police. A search of the subject’s residence recovered all three devices along with other equipment for a fast and effective recovery.
A Greek Tragedy
A university laptop was stolen during a Greek Life event, a large fundraising initiative that supports homeless families. While everyone was working hard to raise money for the cause, one bad actor made off with a campus computer. The investigation took some time since the device only connected intermittently. But Absolute investigators were relentless and after close to a year, they were able to identify the unauthorized user, who turned out to be an employee at the venue where the event occurred. Local police used the evidence to charge the end user with felony theft, a fitting outcome for the thief and a positive result for the university.
Theft, Cross-State Recovery, Intervention
A student left a school laptop in their car much to the delight of a “lucky” thief who promptly broke into the vehicle and made off with the device. The high school reported the theft and Absolute investigators began monitoring the laptop on line. The computer moved from state to state, starting in Alabama where it was sold to an unsuspecting eBay buyer in Arizona who in turn sold it to an eBay buyer in Idaho. After much back and forth – and one refund – the computer ended up in the hands of a 12 year old girl. It was evident the young girl was in need of help given references she made to suicide, bullying, and self-harm. Local police contacted the family and the child was found to be unharmed. The device was recovered and the investigation into the original theft is ongoing.
Sydny Shepard is the Executive Editor of Campus Security & Life Safety.