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Sample – Desktop Computer Physical Security Considerations

Posted in Security (1500) by Guest on the February 20th, 2012

Issue: Security of Computers and CPU cases and the prevention of memory (RAM) loss / theft. 

Recommendations: While no single method of securing a computer or other peripheral equipment is fool proof, the following procedures and products will, to varying degrees, prevent or discourage casual theft attempts. The more inconvenient it becomes to tamper with or remove a computer, the less likely theft will occur. 

Lock and Key
Most PCs today are shipped with a case locking mechanism. PCs so equipped should be secured and the key secured separately from the computer (not left in the lock). 

Cable
Some PCs come with pre-drilled holes for using an aftermarket cable. Cables can be purchased in most computer stores or through a variety of computer mail-order catalogs. These are often effective for preventing computer theft, but do not prevent opening of the CPU for removal of memory (RAM) chips.

Cables that are screw mounted to a computer using existing screws and a pass through a shielded bracket that covers the screw are also available. This prevents removal of the screw without first unlocking and removing the cable. For individuals that already have a PC secured with a cable, the shielded bracket can be purchased separately. 

Padlocks are an inexpensive alternative to cable for securing a CPU case that has been pre-drilled for a cable. While this will not prevent the theft of the CPU itself, it may prevent opening the CPU case. 

Tamper Proof Screws
A variety of tamper proof screws of appropriate size to replace one or several existing CPU case screws are available from some hardware or specialty tool companies. These screws come in a variety of head styles and matching tools. Most screws and all tools must be special ordered, usually from an industrial or specialty tool company. Again, this will not prevent the theft of the CPU itself, but may prevent opening the CPU case.

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