Al asked in Computers & InternetSecurity · 2 years ago

Fear of Geek Squad searching invading my privacy.?

Before I read https://m.dailykos.com/stories/2017/3/12/1642731/-... I just took my laptop to Geek Squad to have windows reinstalled and checked the box to decline data recovery as my files were already backed up. In deleting my files, I also used a file shredder in the actual files I was deleting and on the recycle bin for added security. However, the last time I took my computer there to get the power port fixed, I discovered when I got it back that the tech had used my computer to Google “how to replace power port on xxx model laptop.” The scary part is that I never gave Geek Squad my login password (not this time either). Therefore, I can only conclude that the techs hacked their way into my computer. I fear that GS may still be able to snoop through my files despite the security measures and non-request of data recovery. I don’t have anything illegal but I still have stuff I’d rather not a complete stranger looking through, especially one who may be in a cahoot with law enforcement with no qualms about violating the fourth amendment.

P.S. That doctor’s charges were ultimately dropped because it was determined that Geek Squad and the FBI had violated his fourth amendment rights.

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  • 2 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    1: The techs at Geek Squad _will_ look through your hard drive. That's a fact. No, they aren't supposed to, but they're bored, and being paid minimum wage. Besides it's a good way to find new porn without having to risk getting viruses from the internet. (no I am not joking.)

    2: Fixing the power plug on your computer doesn't require the computer to be able to boot. You should have yanked the hard drive before taking it to them. In fact, all professional fix-it places will tell you to do this because they don't want to be responsible for losing your data if something were to happen. No I doubt Geek Squad would tell you this because...they're not very professional. (minimum wage, remember?)

    3: Windows' password system is a joke. The techs probably have a tool to bypass it since they don't want to let customers know they log onto their machines.

    4: I highly doubt GS installed any sort of remote access software or whatever on your system. First of all, what would be the point? Second, the lawsuits would pretty much destroy what's left of Best Buy.

    5: It may be possible to retrieve files even after you've "shredded" them - but it's highly unlikely Geek Squad would do this. First of all, they're just casually snooping through your system, mainly looking for porn. Second, this is Geek Squad we're talking about. Mainly college kids being paid minimum wage. They're not going to know how to use such undelete tools and they're certainly not going to mess with a customer's computer any more than they have to.

    The fact you know they had to use google to figure out how to fix your computer should tell you about their overall quality and professionalism.

    • cosmo
      Lv 7
      2 years agoReport

      A good "shredder" will overwrite the disk areas it's activated on, overwriting several times with random data. That makes it truly impossible to retrieve by any means by anyone.

  • cosmo
    Lv 7
    2 years ago

    If the same guys installed your operating system, it's possible they added a valid user account that does not show up on the login screen, i.e. a "backdoor" into your system. You can't install Windows without creating an account with superuser capability. It can be deleted later, but maybe it wasn't.

    But you're sure you didn't google that yourself?

    • Al2 years agoReport

      I didn’t buy my computer from Best Buy so no, Geek Squad didn’t install my OS. Therefore, I don’t see how they could get into the superuser account (which has to be activated via command prompt to be able to use it) without access to a normal admin account.

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