A Cautionary Security Tale

Postmodern Security

Early this morning a Facebook acquaintance, henceforth known as “S,” reached out to me with an interesting problem. Some time ago, she bought a laptop from a liquidation auction at Living Social. When she finally got around to booting it up, she discovered something concerning. What follows is our conversation:

S: Hey there! have a tech question for you….I bought a laptop from an auction at Living Social a couple of months ago. Said laptop was supposed to have been wiped clean, but it wasn’t (requires the former users password). Tried calling/emailing Living social, but they’ve been completely non responsive. How can I reboot it?

Mrs. Y: that’s quite frightening, that someone’s personal data is on a laptop that was resold. I can try reaching out to contacts at Living Social, but probably won’t get you much. Was it supposed to come with an operating system already installed?

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