Lost+Found: Case A34J – California, US

  • Location: California, US
  • Date: April 2011
  • Theft: College dorm
  • Missing items: ~10 laptops
  • Recovery time: Less than a week

Full story below.

Regarding our daughter’s laptop recovery, I’m very happy to share the story. She is a student at USC (University of Southern California). Unfortunately she had a laptop stolen from her suite about a month ago and we didn’t have any recovery software loaded on it. We haven’t seen it since. We bought her a replacement laptop and we researched recovery software. She opted for your free Prey and loaded it and activated it.

Last Thursday night someone walked into her dorm room at 3am and, in the dark, stole her laptop and her roommate’s. I’ve heard that he also stole 9 other laptops that night by just going in and out of rooms in several dorm buildings.

My daughter called me in an absolute panic Friday morning when she realized what had happened. She had totally forgotten that she had loaded Prey on the computer. I reminded her and she instantly felt better about the situation. She went on a computer and reported hers missing. A little while later she started getting the emails with AMAZING information. The webcam was taking pictures of the user, she had a GPS location which was translated into an address, and she had screen shot images of what the user was doing on the computer. By looking at the screen shots, she was able to see the user’s Facebook page and get her name and where she worked. My daughter turned all this information over to the police at USC.

Unfortunately they had to wait until Monday to get a search warrant. (I guess it pays to be a thief on the weekend!) Yesterday they got the search warrant and went to the home but no one was there. They then went to her office where they questioned her. I can only imagine how surprised she must have been!! She very quickly ratted out her boyfriend, who had purchased the stolen laptop. The officers had no problem arresting him since there were multiple outstanding warrants for his arrest.

They took him in to the police station where he cried like a baby. The police are now following the trail, which includes tweet messages and phone numbers called, back to the original thief. We hear they might be making his arrest today.

Isn’t that wonderful!!! I just love it. The USC detectives are SO impressed with Prey that the one I talked to already loaded it on his laptop
and it sounds like they are considering some sort of recommendation to all students to load the software. He said they were looking at Lo*** but now think Prey is the way to go.

So, bottom line – great job Prey writers! We love you!!!!!