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View Poll Results: Have you ever lost a portable device? Did you take precautions?
I have lost a portable device before. 2 5.56%
I have not lost a portable device (yet). 29 80.56%
I am using heavy encryption to secure my data. 9 25.00%
My data is as open. Take the risk, feel the rush. 13 36.11%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 36. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-29-2005, 08:52 PM   #1
Alexander Turcic
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Risks of losing a portable device (poll)

Bruce Schneier (mastermind of the Blowfish cipher) is quoting the Washington Post regarding the risks involved of losing a portable device nowadays.

Quote:
I've noticed this in my own life. If I didn't make a special effort to limit the amount of information on my Treo, it would include detailed scheduling information from the past six years. My small laptop would include every e-mail I've sent and received in the past dozen years. And so on. A lot of us are carrying around an enormous amount of very personal data.
Which leads me to our poll. Have you ever lost a portable device such as your beloved PDA? And have you taken special precautions, such as encrypting your sensitive data? I've never lost any data, but I have also never bothered to use any encryption.
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Old 07-29-2005, 10:25 PM   #2
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My wallet (containing the cash from my very first paycheck) was lifted while I was on the bus on my way home. Since then I have always paid careful attention to small personal objects and haven't lost so much as a key in over 30 years. And no, I do not let others use my PDA. Sensitive applications and files are password protected.
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Old 07-30-2005, 03:45 AM   #3
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I haven't lost a device yet (thank God!), but just in case, I use Codewallet Pro to secure ALL my sensitive info (contacts as well, as it syncs nicely with the desktop version. This is especially handy, as a sys admin I keep a lot of sensitive stuff stored in there.

Craig.
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Old 07-30-2005, 11:32 AM   #4
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I havent lost one yet either. I encrypt some things but keep backups of everything on seperate very encrypted media. I also have a pat down system that basically stops me in my tracks if something is missing from a pocket on my body.
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Old 07-30-2005, 02:24 PM   #5
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I don't encrypt anything but passwords. I don't use that strong of a password for my Keyring database, which I really should, so if someone got it they could just bruteforce it. It's not an English word, but it's only lowercase letters. >>; At least it's 9 characters long...

Not like I have much of any high importance in there anyway. Some e-mail account passwords, some IM screen name passwords, and a few FTP/SSH accounts.

Now, if someone managed to get both my laptop and my Palm, I'd have one hell of a time getting everything back together... I really should make a CD-backup of some things like password files... I use semi-random passwords of around 10-12 characters for online things, since those are more vulnerable to attack than my laptop/Palm (which are physically safe most of the time). The downside is I can't *remember* them from my head. Meaning I'm pretty screwed if I loose the password file on my Palm and the backup on my laptop...

*shudder* This kinda made me want to keep another backup. *copies password file to another computer as well*
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Old 07-31-2005, 05:18 AM   #6
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I used to encrypt passwords (PINs, CC #'s, Logins) on my Sony Clie using Strip, a free open-source tool using AES-256bit encryption. Without much bells and whistles, but it worked (I would never trust a closed-source product in this regard).

Now, on Pocket PCs, I have yet to find a reliable open-source implementation of a strong cipher such as AES. Right now that leaves me totally unprotected, even my weekly backups on SD Card are unprotected (Sprite offers a password requirement, but it is easily defeated). In other words, someone could steal the card and have the full content of my PDA ;(
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Old 07-31-2005, 09:29 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin Dunstan
I used to encrypt passwords (PINs, CC #'s, Logins) on my Sony Clie using Strip, a free open-source tool using AES-256bit encryption. Without much bells and whistles, but it worked (I would never trust a closed-source product in this regard).

Now, on Pocket PCs, I have yet to find a reliable open-source implementation of a strong cipher such as AES. Right now that leaves me totally unprotected, even my weekly backups on SD Card are unprotected (Sprite offers a password requirement, but it is easily defeated). In other words, someone could steal the card and have the full content of my PDA ;(
What about gnupg? There are binaries for Pocket PC available at http://www.symbolictools.de/public/p...cations/gnupg/

Or Bruce Schneier's Password Safe (using Blowfish) available from https://sourceforge.net/project/show...ease_id=191101
Only the 1.9.2 version is avialable for Pocket PC at the moment

Stu
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Old 08-01-2005, 02:43 AM   #8
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I voted "I am using heavy encryption to secure my data.", but you probably already guessed that <grin>

I haven't lost anything that holds "data" on it, ever.. and even if I did, I have several backups of anything critical, all crypted with double-layers of course.

Now.. with a 1-year old daughter walking around, other things outside my office tend to "walk" to places I'd never bring them (found my keys in a clothing drawer and my earbud headphones behind the TV stand this week). She just walks around with things in her hands until she gets bored, drops/throws whatever she's holding and finds something else to walk around with.

Makes for fun times when trying to find the keys, remote control and other things.

But she's cute, so I'll forgive her... for now. <cheshire cat grin>
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Old 02-27-2007, 07:45 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexander Turcic
I've never lost any data, but I have also never bothered to use any encryption.
Me neither. But I never put any data on my PDA I thought is worth protecting. The privacy loss incurred from just having all my contacts stolen feels negligible compared with the extra overhead.
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Old 02-27-2007, 07:47 AM   #10
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the poll is strange, btw. looks like the 1st two options should have been one poll, and the second two -- the other. You could have used all the 4 possible combinations and this would have fitted into 4-option format as well, but the answers would have been different I thus just voted in the 1st half (whether have already lost one or not).
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Old 02-27-2007, 11:52 AM   #11
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I have lost a PDA, and I do not use any encryption. Of course, the only personal information on there was a backup of my cell phone's contact list.

Otherwise, all I use a PDA for is Ebooks and the rare game. I wish I had not lost the hardware, but they can have the tech docs, web fiction and pd books, and the book contents are mirrored in a folder on my Mac.

On the other hand, I will never know what my true high score is for TextTwister!

Jack
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Old 03-12-2007, 03:34 PM   #12
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Never lost one (yet.) Coats, hats, and that sort of stuff I've lost. Never a camera, PDA, mp3 player, Reader, or cell phone.

When I first got a PDA I locked everything down tight. So tight even I couldn't get to a bunch of it without looking at my notes that were someplace else when I needed the data. Since then I secure nothing. Like Jack, I now carry only open materials on the Palm powered Samsung cell phone. There are books, contacts, and the replacement ink cartridge numbers for the ink jet printers. Governments will tumble if these fall into the wrong hands.
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Old 03-12-2007, 04:12 PM   #13
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I'm pretty good about not losing things. I've never lost anything that I remember since maybe I was a little kid, not even a pen. Definitely not a wallet, camera, etc... I don't have a PDA, but my laptop is a work computer and since I deal with a lot of sensitive data it is fully encrypted. When I had a personal laptop though, was wide open, I don't even run virus scan on home machines and I've never been infected in 10+ years. <knock on wood>
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