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What are risks specifically for an Apple Silicon device? What can I do to make them less critical?

If prepared properly, what shoud I do after my Mac is lost / stolen?

Here is my homework research so far:


Prepare:

  • data on SSD can be accessed => enable FileVault

    • password for iCloud account can be compromised => use local FileVault recovery key rather than iCloud account-based unlock
  • can be fully erased / reinstalled =>

    • use Macbook under non-admin user most of the time
    • make MacOS admin's password impractical to bruteforce;
    • use Smart Card based login (e.g. Yubikey) for admin user, with multiple keys;

When lost / stolen:


It's still unclear whether I can do anything about these:

  • MacBook can be sold to a non-authorized repair shop as a "donor" device: battery, screen, top case, keyboard and trackpad don't seem to be locked to its original mainboard (propose a more attractive ransom amount in Mark As Lost message?)
  • employee of AASP (Apple Authorised Service provider) can be bribed / social-engineered to reset access to the FileVault drive / to allow fully erasing Macbook (did it ever happen in the past?)
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  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.
    – bmike
    Commented Feb 5, 2022 at 17:57
  • @bmike Unable to post to chat room now; this is a question format I tried to reproduce here.
    – yurkennis
    Commented Mar 23, 2022 at 12:59

1 Answer 1

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Besides the measures you have described in your question, you should consider "branding" or "marking" the MacBook Pro. If you're responsible for an organization's computers, you might want to consider putting a logo on them - if it is a private computer, you could be marking it with your name.

If the markings are hard to remove, that makes them less desirable and slightly more "useless" when stolen. Note that this also means that it can be harder to sell as used later.

You can consider similarly marking the components inside the laptop, but it is really not as effective as with the casing.

Another option is use DNA marking. Some insurance companies gives out free or very low cost DNA marking kits - including stickers to put on the computer to make it clear that it has been marked.

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