Prevent Being The Victim Of A Stolen Surface Device

Stolen Surface Tablet - what to do

You always hope that it doesn’t happen to you and that your new Surface doesn’t get stolen or lost. Unfortunately, it does happen to some people and it is always disruptive when it does.

Sadly, Surfaces – like other small electronics, are an easy target. In addition to the cost of replacement, there may be personal information and data on the device that can be difficult, if not impossible, to recover.

In fact, we recently had such a theft at my work. It’s really sad because everyone gets very upset. Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to minimize the chances your Surface gets stolen and, if the worst happens, maximize the chances you can get it recovered.

Prevent Being The Victim Of A Stolen Surface Device:

  1. Do not leave your Surface tablet unattended: this is probably the most important and so obvious that it almost seems silly to bring up but ALWAYS keep an eye on your device. I cannot tell you how many people I see, in coffee shops and around campus, walk away from their device to get a refill, go to the bathroom, or go chat with someone at a nearby table. Just don’t do it!
  2. Register your device with Microsoft: This is important because it can help law enforcement return your device to you when it is recovered. And Microsoft is more than willing to cooperate with the police.
  3. Turn on Find My Device: Windows 10 includes a find my device feature you can use to
  4. Consider using 3rd-party tracking software: This will help you track your Surface if it goes missing. Check out this article on tracking software for your Surface for some help with such tracking software.
  5. Know your Serial Number: Make sure you have your device’s Serial #, make, and model written down somewhere in your records. This is always good advice because you never know when you’ll need it.
  6. Get a Lock: You should also consider buying a physical security lock for your Surface. It’s ugly but, it works when your Surface is at your desk.
  7. Check your home-owners insurance: Many home and renter insurance policies cover personal electronics. It wont get your device back but, it will help with a replacement.
  8. Register at Work/School: If your company offers a personal device registration* (for security purposes or network access) take advantage of it. We had such a program at the University of Michigan and it can be very helpful when trying to locate a stolen piece of equipment. If nothing else, it makes it harder for someone to pawn the stolen device.
  9. Call the Police: If the worst happens and your Surface is lost or stolen, make sure you file a police report right away and provide them with the necessary info.

NOTE: Many of these steps must be taken PRIOR to theft/loss, so please take them now!

As you can see, it’s most important to take preventative steps before something happens to your Surface. If you don’t take those steps now, frankly, there’s not much you’ll be able to do if your Surface goes missing later.


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