Devices such as computers, laptops, and mobiles require repair services after every certain period. And, you can’t fix it at your home unless you are a computer hardware expert. Although most of the problems are resolved by restarting it, you are in deep trouble when your laptop crashes. You are left with no choice but to take it to the expert. The elephant in the room would be; is my data secured in the service center?
In this blog, we will read about some things that need to be taken care of before handing over your device to the service center. Now, these are only possible when you can still access your system to some extent. If you cannot access it in the usual way, then use safe mode. Restart your pc and press and hold the F8 key. Keep it pressed before the windows logo appears. If the logo appears first, then you have to restart it again.
When you successfully press the F8 key, then the Advanced Boot Options screen will appear, use the arrow keys to highlight the safe mode option, and then press Enter.
Clear the cache and cookies of the site
Always make sure to remove all the cookies and cache from the applications and websites. If your device is facing software issues the company will ask for user credentials, so before handing over the device, always make sure to log out from your Microsoft, or Google accounts and remove all the saved passwords, cookies, and caches from the browser.
If you do not want to provide admin user access, you can create a new user/guest user and set up a little so that the technician can verify the software in that user account. Revoke the admin privileges from that user account if there. This will help you prevent breaches of data and confidentiality.
Backup your data
Oh, those photos from your last family trip or highly confidential files sent by your client - all are important as some have emotional value and some have professional value. So, it is always recommended to keep copies of data in a storage device so you can access the data even when you do not have your laptop around. The repairing process sometimes can take weeks, depending on the fault.
For storing the data, you can use an external storage device such as a hard disk or can store it online on cloud platforms such as Google Drive, One drive, etc. Not only will it help you access it anytime, but it will also protect you from the risk of losing data if your data gets corrupted or suffer from hardware failure. However, if you are logged in to your cloud through your laptop, make sure you log out from there first.
Check the authenticity of the service center
Choose a trusted service center that has a history of satisfied clients and avoids any unethical activity. You can verify the company by reading reviews and validating the contact information.
Remove all the accessories or parts
When you send your device to the service station, you never know who will repair your device and how ethical it will be. What if they misplace it by some human error or may damage it physically by accident? It is always recommended to remove all external devices such as HDD (Hard Disk Drive), SSD (Solid State Drive), or any other storage device. Also, you can move to a higher step and record a video of the hardware parts of the computer or laptop before sending them to your device. This will surely benefit you in the future. By taking such precautions, there will be very few chances of misplacing hardware parts.
Encrypt all the files
Before handing over the device to someone for repair, encrypt all the personal files or any other confidential files present on the system. The encryption of data prevents any unauthorized access and only allows the intended person to decrypt the files with the right credentials.
If someone tries to open encrypted files, all they will find are gibberish values. They won’t be able to understand it until the correct password is submitted. In case you do not encrypt the files and folders, then your data is much of an easy target. Any person unethically can read, modify, or delete your data without your notice. That is why encrypting all the files is a good habit whenever giving your device to someone to protect your privacy.
Calculate the cost of repair
If you do not research anything about the fault in your computer, then you can be easily fooled. Always try to find out the errors or faults in your device, whether it is software or hardware. If the fault is in the hardware, then you can search the parts of the device directly on Google and can easily calculate the estimated cost of repair.
You will be charged a little more than the cost of hardware because of the installation fee. In the cases of software failure, you can try to fix minor errors by finding solutions on the web. This method will help you estimate the cost of the repair or replacement of damaged products and lower the overall cost in case of software issues only. This way, you will end up saving a few bucks.
Make your device easy to access for the areas required
By providing easier access to the areas that are required by the technicians, you allow them to speed up the process and help them in resolving the error or fault faster.
To make it easy to access the device, what you can do is remove the windows password so that they do not need to spend any time logging in to the device and set up the location of the software that is causing errors on the desktop page. Also, you can describe the error in a text file and let them know at what part or process the device is failing to proceed further. This will help you resolve all the software or windows errors as soon as possible that you might be facing.
Nowadays, the knowledge of cyber-attacks and their prevention is very important, especially for the users who use computers and laptops for business purposes. For once, if you are giving your personal laptop for repair, then your personal data is at stake, but in the case of commercial laptops, your whole business strategies and profits can be compromised. If the laptop gets into the wrong hands, then the concerned person can easily recover the Credit card or Debit card passwords using modern hacking techniques, and you are just one OTP away from losing your money.
You should understand all the concerns mentioned above and try to save yourself from modern cyber-attacks. While submitting your machine to anyone for any purpose, either obtain a privacy maintenance certificate or reduce the access rights for users or make a new user with minimum rights. These are the on-the-spot methods that can be implemented within 10 minutes to 15 minutes, saving you time. Also, if you have a backup at any cloud server, then you can simply delete all the data from the local users and simply hand over the laptop.