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What To Do if Your Computer is Stolen

Bad things happen. Over the years we've had several incidents where Dell desktops and notebooks have been stolen from staff. If this should happen to you, here's a quick checklist from Ag IT Support with regards to securing your digital identity.
  1. Report theft to local authorities.
    • This officially documents the incident.
    • This will provide a case number which will be required for other reporting functions.
  2. Change Passwords IMMEDIATELY. This step should begin ASAP after contacting the local authorities. You should not wait until the police take your report to change your password(s). Failure to change your password creates a significant risk to your data and the University networking environment as a whole.
    • If you do not have a computer to change your password, you should report to the closest Penn State location (campus or extension office) and use a computer at that location.
      1. See the How To Change your PSU Access Account password and College AG password steps as a start. If other passwords for sensitive websites were stored on the computer as well (ex: banking/trading sites, shopping, etc.), these passwords should also be changed.
    • If you cannot change your password at a campus or extension office, please contact AgCompSupport@psu.edu or call Computer Support at (814) 865-1229 to have your account password changed.
  3. Report the theft to Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences IT Support using a method below.
    • Create a Help Desk ticket
      1. Complete all form fields.
      2. In the " Problem Details " field, enter " stolen computer."
      3. Provide an alternate contact number and the computer Service Tag(s) in the problem details field.
    • Call Computer Support at (814) 865-1229.
    • Email AgCompSupport@psu.edu.
  4. Report the theft to Penn State Security. Per PSU AD-20 , Penn State Security should be informed of the stolen property. In the case of a compromised account or an incident involving sensitive information, call (814) 863-9533 during regular business hours. They should be provided with the following when possible:
    • Service Tag of the computer.
    • UserID(s) and Username(s) in use on the computer.
    • Any Social Security Numbers, Credit Card Information, Financial Information, or Children's Information on the computer.
    • Police case number.
  5. Report the theft to Dell (when applicable).
    • Use the " Report a stolen system " Higher Education webpage to place a notification with Dell. In case anyone contacts Dell for "support," Dell will be aware that the equipment was stolen. At the "Report a stolen system" page, you only need to fill in the fields marked with the red asterisk. You will need to provide the Service Tag of the stolen machine. If needed, Ag IT Support can provide that to you. Also, in the Additional information field at the bottom of the form, add: This computer was purchased through Penn State University.

NOTES:

  1. Counties may have insurance through their office or local government. If the insurance company will need some justification of the value, contact Ag IT Support to obtain the equipment cost/value.
  2. If a county has insurance coverage and the EN equipment is leased, request an early lease buyout in order to obtain the full cost of the computer. The equipment will still need to be paid and the buyout covered. If there is no insurance coverage through the county, the computer does not need to be processed as an early buyout — it can continue on the lease. The EN payment to IT is still required.
  3. There is no insurance coverage through Penn State. PSU's Risk Management equipment limit is over $50,000.