ProtectingYour Rights

How to Handle Computer Theft on Campus

On Behalf of | Jan 24, 2020 | Firm News

January 24, 2020

As students move to college for the first time, safety is the main priority for students and parents alike. On college campuses, burglary is the most commonly committed crime, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. In fact, burglary constitutes for almost half of the crimes on college campuses.

Theft can occur in several different ways at colleges. While another student may break and enter a dorm, others may steal unattended items. In terms of valuables, computers and smartphones are among the most valuable items that college thieves may seek out. Often, this occurs easily if students leave their items unattended in public spaces.

What can students do if they have their computer or other device stolen? These devices tend to have a lot of personal information that criminals can use against a student. Indiana University suggests that a student contacts the police department as soon as possible. When stolen from campus, then students should phone the campus police department.

Police may ask students for their contact information and university username. In addition, students will have to answer questions about where they last had the device, what time they last saw the device and the last time they used the device on the college’s network. In addition, any descriptions or identifying marks can help police locate the device.

In addition to contacting the police, students can use a GPS tracker to attempt to find it. Students should also change their passphrases to ensure that the thief cannot access secure files or websites. If necessary, students may have to wipe their devices remotely.