How strong is my HP laptop BIOS password?

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by bonedriven, May 1, 2009.

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  1. bonedriven

    bonedriven Registered Member

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    I'm thinking what if someone steals my laptop.

    I disabled all other boot option except Harddisk,then set a BIOS password.

    Now I'm going to enable bitlock feature in windows 7. I have to do some research before doing it though.

    What could a thief do with my stolen laptop? Maybe hacking BIOS password is the first thing he needs to do? I read that simply pulling the battery out or manipulation of wires works. Is BIOS password so easy to break?
     
  2. lodore

    lodore Registered Member

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    if someone steals your laptop i assume they may take out rhe battery to get past the bios password.
    on the other hand they may simply take out the hard drive and put it in another computer as a slave drive.
     
  3. wilbertnl

    wilbertnl Registered Member

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    Maybe saving sensitive data in a TrueCrypt container is another interesting option?
    I used this when I took my laptop on a intercontinental trip.
     
  4. tipstir

    tipstir Registered Member

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    My clients have their laptop HDD encrypted so if that laptop gets stolen the data on the HDD can't be access. BIOS password can be by-pass so that's not the right way to go. Some laptops like DELL have two passwords. Have been tried but, the HDD encryption is the way to go. Some newer laptops have it so the entire system can't be use if stolen.

    So you work for a company and have encrypted HDD so the first then you do is turn on the laptop to be greeted by the company logo and password to unlock the system HDD.

    TrueCryt can be used over the network or on the system good for files protection. Still best way is to use boot encrypt HDD software.
     
  5. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    Any good freewares of this type?
     
  6. Aaron Here

    Aaron Here Registered Member

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  7. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    Ah, well, thanks, I know of TC, use it on one of my flash drives. I thought "boot encrypt HDD software" was something besides/other than Truecrypt based on tipstir's wording.

    Since I've not looked at TC in context of a system HD, maybe I'm just missing half the boat.

    So, with TC, I can encrypt my whole laptop harddrive and it resides OK outside of WIndows/the OS, so I can completely block access past the POST?
     
  8. bonedriven

    bonedriven Registered Member

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    OK,it seems my idea was ill conceived.

    My intention was to make my laptop almost unusable to a thief. Since bypassing BIOS password is child's play,it is impossible to succeed with that.

    BTW,i noticed that even if I disabled all other boot options,my laptop still can boot to the usb disk which I accidentally didn't unplug. There are two sections to set.In the boot order section,usb disk was set to boot first. But I did disable usb disk boot up in the boot option section. A Bios bug?:argh:
     
  9. Fontaine

    Fontaine Registered Member

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    If you're going to add the task of typing in another password before the OS, may as well encrypt the whole hard drive and make it a Truecrypt password. I use TC on my laptops and it works flawlessly.
     
  10. Fontaine

    Fontaine Registered Member

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    Truecrypt (via whole disk encryption) loads before any OS on the system..if the password is not correctly entered, the drive cannot be accessed. Works quite well for me.
     
  11. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    That's exactly what I was hoping. Thanks much.
     
  12. bonedriven

    bonedriven Registered Member

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    So if the thief want to use the encrypted disk,formation is the only option. Right?
     
  13. Fontaine

    Fontaine Registered Member

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    Yep. To a common thief with no intention of trying to crack the password, the drive in it's current form would be unusable. They would have to format and your data would be protected (because it would be destroyed).

    As I mentioned above, some people tweak the Truecrypt login message to say "No Operating System" or something to that effect to make it seems like there is no OS present.

    You could always greet them with a message that says "Give it your best shot" with a blinking cursor. :)
     
  14. Aaron Here

    Aaron Here Registered Member

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    While this may be true for desktops, it's certainly not child's play on a laptop. In my experiences with laptops it's been quite difficult to get at the CMOS battery without special tools and know-how, and without destroying the laptop!
     
  15. SourMilk

    SourMilk Registered Member

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    Afik, a BIOS password will not keep a person from uninstalling the hard drive and get data from it. It will render the notebook useless until the BIOS is reset (a minor annoyance to a geeky thief). Hard drive encryption is the way to go for data security and rotweiler or pitbull for the notebook.

    SourMilk out
     
  16. Aaron Here

    Aaron Here Registered Member

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    :) - Yup, as I indicated in post #6, TC is one of the best ways to secure the contents of the hard drive. All I meant to imply above is that it's not child's play to defeat a laptop's BIOS password.
     
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