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Protect personal info on electronic devices

The Camp Verde Journal of Camp Verde, Arizona

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As students across the state go to school, many carry cell phones, iPads, iPods, laptops and, other electronic devices everywhere from the classroom to the car.

The Better Business Bureau reminds students and their parents to talk about different ways to keep electronics and personal information out of the wrong hands.

College campuses, cafeterias, local hang outs and even classrooms can be an easy target for those looking to "score" expensive electronic devices. Not only can thieves steal personal property, they could also gain access to sensitive information such as emails, text messages, calendars, photos and social media network logins.

"These electronics should be treated like a pile of cash; it's a significant financial investment that should be protected at all times," BBB President/CEO Matthew Fehling stated.

BBB offers the following advice to students and parents on how to keep personal property and sensitive information safe at school:

Use password protections. Even if a thief steals an electronic device, having password protections could limit their access to personal information. Avoid sharing passwords with friends or carrying them around on paper.

Keep it off the floor. No matter where a person is in public a large study hall in school, a conference, a coffee shop, or a registration desk avoid putting electronics on the floor. If it must be put down, place it between feet or at least up against a leg to be aware of it.

Leave it at home. In some cases, school districts may have strict policies about students bringing electronic devices to campus. Be sure to find out what is allowed while on campus and in the classroom.

Also, determine if electronics are really needed during school hours or if they can wait until the student get home.

Get it out of the car. Don't leave electronics in the car not on the seat, not in the trunk. Parked cars are a favorite target of thieves; don't help them by leaving property unattended.

Don't leave it "for just a minute." Classmates seem trustworthy, so you're comfortable leaving your electronics on the table while you go outside for a break.

The people at the coffee shop seem nice, so you ask them to keep an eye out while you use the rest-room. Don't leave a laptop, iPad or other electronics unguarded not even for a minute.

Use bells and whistles. Depending on an individual's security needs, an alarm can be a useful tool.

Some laptop alarms sound when there's unexpected motion, or when the computer moves outside a specified range around a person. Also, consider a kind of "LoJack" for a laptop. This program reports the location of a stolen laptop once it's connected to the Internet.

For more consumer tips and news, visit BBB's News Center at

Copyright 2012 The Camp Verde Journal, Camp Verde, Arizona. All Rights Reserved. This content, including derivations, may not be stored or distributed in any manner, disseminated, published, broadcast, rewritten or reproduced without express, written consent from SmallTownPapers, Inc.

Original Publication Date: September 26, 2012

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