Browse Prior Art Database

SOS Beacon for Stolen Systems

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000123676D
Original Publication Date: 1999-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Apr-05
Document File: 2 page(s) / 86K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Cromer, D: AUTHOR [+6]

Abstract

Problem Solved By This Invention: Theft of Personal Computers is a multi-million dollar problem throughout the world. Desktop systems are targets given that the systems are relatively small and have a very high resale value.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 53% of the total text.

SOS Beacon for Stolen Systems

   Problem Solved By This Invention:

   Theft of Personal Computers is a multi-million
dollar problem throughout the world.  Desktop systems are targets
given that the systems are relatively small and have a very high
resale value.

   A cover latch is a common mechanism to detect when
a tamper to a system has occurred.  Given the knowledge of a tamper,
the system can be disabled or require entry of privilege access
password (PAP) to allow system to boot.  The ability to render an
asset non-operational is an extremely effective method of deterring
theft of that asset.  Frequently this method is not implemented given
that use of PAP requires tight control of passwords by network
administrator which increases the number of service calls.  The
second problem with this method, is that if the system administrator
losses passwords accidently or as a disgruntled employee, re-enabling
access to the machines typically requires returning systems to OEM
manufacturer.

   The invention improves on current mechanisms of
identifying machines that have been tampered with by sending SOS
packets periodically in a stealth mode and while waiting for
instructions from network  administrator.  This invention improves on
the mechanism used to determine when the network computer has been
disconnected from the network.

   Description of Invention:

   The invention is an extension to IBM's Alert on LAN
(AoL) technology.  Currently AoL is capable of detecting
disconnection and connections to network as well as cover tamper.
The invention is the addition of a new mode to AoL to provide a SOS
beacon after a tamper event (cover or LanLeash) which creates a SOS
alert to a pre-identified location, such as a network administrator
or security.  AoL II has the capability to send alerts, whenever the
system is powered with AC power regardless of power state.  The
invention works in the following way:
  1.  End user or system administrator programs the desired
      alert tim...