Best Buy 'Geek Squad' worker helped FBI conduct warrantless searches

Discussion in 'privacy general' started by driekus, May 23, 2016.

  1. driekus

    driekus Registered Member

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    I think most people here would never give Best Buy workers access to their computers but here is another good reason why.

    http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-geek-squad-child-porn-20160521-snap-story.html

    Yes I understand in this case it was child porn but we know how the government uses this as a way to increase its powers as few are reluctant to support the rights of child sex offenders. Based on the quote below I have doubts that this was an accidental find and more a deliberate search.

     
  2. Carver

    Carver Registered Member

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    While online shopping for a wireless router I read through "best Buys" policy's, the results are alarming. That is the jest of it is "Best Buy" has all the rights the consumer has very little rights.
     
  3. Minimalist

    Minimalist Registered Member

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    I don't know if it's their usual practice to open personal files when they are fixing customers' computers.
    I helped my friends with their machines, even restored personal files from deleted partitions and never felt a need to open personal files. Just do what you're paid to do and leave personal data alone. When dealing with other people's data, less is definitely more.
     
  4. itman

    itman Registered Member

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    Another case of intelligent people showing incredible stupidity when it comes to computer technology.

    At least it appears the individual wasn't an experienced pedophile. They would have had the smarts to wipe the hard drive before sending it out for service. If that wasn't possible, then they would have just replaced the drive themselves or had another pervert do it.
     
  5. hawki

    hawki Registered Member

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    I have never used Geek Fraud , but I have purchased a couple of PC's from Best Buy over the years. Last week I received an email from Geek Squad. Geek Squad is losing its separate corpoprate identity and affiliate corporate stutus and is becoming a part of Best Buy and Best Buy's Privacy Policy will apply to "Geek Squad." It is also stated that Best Buy's Privacy Policy has been updated to simpler english so as to be easier to understand.

    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/help-to...=790939&SubscriberID=254350346&eut=2747775594

    None of Best Buy's Privacy Policy appears to be appropriate or applicable or well- suited to Geek Squad. It almost appears as though Geek Squad has no privacy Policy as the BB PP appears to be geared to transactional and online submitted information.
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2016
  6. Palancar

    Palancar Registered Member

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    How could anyone with all those images on the media have been that stupid? I have no stomach for that stuff, but the stupidity of taking a device to BB with all that on the drive(s) is amazing.
     
  7. syrinx

    syrinx Registered Member

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    I believe in privacy and while I'm not familiar with this case or the circumstances I can think of a few instances where such a discovery could happen without a deliberate search. The first that springs to mind is that they used a windows based OS to preform the recovery. The second, related to the first, is any recovery software that displays 'previews' for images or documents along the way. These days, that's quite a few! It could happen at any point from within a piece of software trying to 'show the user' what they would be recovering to the standard Windows thumbnails.

    I've worked on many computers (usually friends or family) and never opened any files to snoop but I have encountered the occasional thumbnail I wish I hadn't :p They were nothing like this but I think the Geek Squad employee in question did the right thing here. A paycheck isn't worth letting a predator (be it child related, a murder or terrorist plots ~not to mention other possibilities where I might find it acceptable) remain undiscovered so I applaud the employees actions in this scenario even *if* the FBI prompted him to the search but my initial thoughts are that it is more likely he saw it, then reported it.
     
  8. Carver

    Carver Registered Member

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    People have sensitive information on their HD credit reports; bank statements; Bank info isn't that what encryption is for ( I am not talking about child porn). But it is not the employees job to snoop.
     
  9. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    Maybe he didn't know that the drive contained incriminating files. Maybe he bought the drive used, and didn't wipe it well enough. Maybe he had loaned it to a friend. Or ...
     
  10. Palancar

    Palancar Registered Member

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    Spoken like a lawyer. LOL!

    I would never take a computer to BB even if it was clean as a whistle first. I would be too worried about "interdiction" of my devices. If it was a warranty repair, fine, but then I would sell the machine and replace it for one bought with $$.

    Tin foil hat I suppose.
     
  11. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    Not at all :)

    I've never had third parties work on my machines. Except for servers that I've used only for true-name consulting.
     
  12. driekus

    driekus Registered Member

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    Lenovo does allow you to purchase warranty where you keep the hdd if you send the computer in for service. Very good idea and surprised not offered by others.
     
  13. Palancar

    Palancar Registered Member

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    The only problem there is if you have software problems fixing the hardware (or examining it for defect) doesn't really help you at all. Most users don't have a clue on how to restore a full hard drive unless its point and click stuff from the factory.
     
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