Protecting Your Hardware Away from the Office: Our 4 Tips

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By Bernadine Racoma, content manager of WorkSmartr.com

Take a look at our guide to protecting your laptop when you’re away from the office.

As the world converts more and more of their businesses online, there is a rise in freelance workers, employees working from home or hybrid working, traveling for work, digital nomads and other lifestyle choices that ultimately means you’re taking your laptop home with you.

It’s hard to think of an employee nowadays who doesn’t have a company laptop in their home, or is perhaps using their own laptop to be their own boss. Either way that means you’ve got one piece of hardware doing a lot of important work, and it’s important to keep it in one piece to continue to work. So, take a look at our guide to protecting your laptop when you’re away from the office.

The basics

You know what we’re going to say here but it might as well be said: use common sense. It’s safe to assume that the laptop you’re working on away from the office, doesn’t in fact belong to you, but you can bet you’ll be landed with the bill if you were to break it.

So, a gentle touch please. Don’t leave it on the arm of the sofa, don’t leave it open on the bed to answer the door, don’t leave it anywhere unstable or that can be jumped on that will snap it in half.

We know coffee is the elixir of life, but keep it a good distance from the laptop, where the cat can’t knock it over in a moment of needless malevolence.

The worst one is the cracked LCD screen. That enthralling training video going over the stuff you do every day is going to be all squiggly now. Whatever is to be done? Give the keyboard a sweep before shutting your laptop to avoid smaller scratches, and maybe invest in a screen protector. Avoid bigger cracks and warping by not putting pressure on your laptop.

And don’t leave your laptop in the car. Even if you’re going to need it first thing in the morning and there’s no point in taking it inside, the temperature in the car, from the sweltering California heat to the mid-winter Toronto snow, and just about everything in between will destroy your laptop. It might be quite balmy tonight, but the car takes what it’s given and turns it into an extreme. There's always a Metro alert in there. Same for the belly of a plane, by the way. It’s freezing in there. Keep your laptop with you on the plane.

It’s simple, but these things happen. Avoid a hefty replacement fine by being careful.

AirTag tracking

Apple have created the AirTag as a way of recovering your items, should they end up lost or stolen. They look like a large keyring and can be stuck to valuable items so that you can find them again via the tracking app in your phone.

The trackers are $29 each, which is a good investment when you compare it to the price of a decent laptop. But that all depends on how much your company considers a decent laptop.

Even if you work on your own laptop, you might think about getting an AirTag. If you are traveling, and the baggage handlers, again, manage to lose your baggage, it can be helpful to quickly look up where it has ended up on the app’s map and then make moves to get it back.

Laptop Insurance

Of course, sometimes something is just lost. Your baggage is in Timbuktu, the thief tossed the AirTag once they broke into your car, etc.

In that case, you’d be better off with some laptop insurance. As a safety net against theft and loss, your laptop will be covered so that you can replace it as soon as possible. Things go wrong, even with all the precautions of keeping the family cat away from the electrics and using the latest 007 gadgets to keep a hold of your laptop. In fact, according to research firm Gartner, a laptop is stolen every 53 seconds. You’re going to need insurance to avoid being another crime statistic.

You can cover your laptop with renters insurance, however, it will take a deductible if you want to claim only your laptop. And don’t think you’re safe because you’ve got the warrantee. Most warranties from manufacturers won’t cover theft, so it’s really best to get insurance.

Backup your files

Another way to avoid disaster, so that even if your laptop does go up in a puff of smoke, is to keep your files backed up. If you store your files in a cloud, they’re in a virtual space that won’t be affected by a smashed screen or a spilled coffee, and you can tap into it when you get a new laptop.

 

About the Author
Bernadine Racoma is the Content Manager of WorkSmartr.com. Her long experience in an international development institution and extensive travels have provided her with a wealth of knowledge and insights to cultural diversity. She writes to inform, engage, and share the idea of the Internet being a useful platform for communicating, knowledge sharing, educating, and entertaining. 

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