Someone stole my laptop that I use to remote into my work desktop. Is there any way I can:

1) Block this connection

or 2) Reverse the remote access and see if I can get stuff off it (or wipe it),

or 3) track down where it is now.

It's a dell laptop, and is password protected, but I'm worried someone could hack in.

Thanks for any advice!

  • Remote into it, get the IP, get the approximate location, report the IP to the authorities / their ISP, Profit. – var firstName Aug 30 '16 at 18:34
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    Change the password used to access your work desktop. You will be unable to "track" your laptop. You will be unable to "reverse" the remote access connection, since that wasn't setup, before it was stolen. Even if you had set it up, it is trivial to block, report the theft to the police and be done with it. – Ramhound Aug 30 '16 at 18:34
  • "It's a dell laptop, and is password protected," If it is a Windows user account password, it can be cracked easily. – Moab Aug 30 '16 at 20:24

Yes, yes and yes!

  1. You can block the port in your Firewall for RDP, the protocol over which you use remote access. Add an inbound rule disallowing packets from port 3389.

  2. You might be able to access the computer remotely if the thief has it on. If you can, get the IP by going to a website like IPChicken, and write it down. You should also be able to remotely manage the file system this way.

  3. You should also be able to get the approximate location by tracing the IP using a free online DNS resolver. From there you can report the IP to their ISP or local authorities and get your stuff back. You could even just get the location using Microsoft's "Find my Device" feature, in Windows 10; a feature that many disable because of a false idea of it being "spyware"

However, I want to warn you; if the person who has possession of the computer has wiped it (or is going to), your data and computer are lost. If you had Windows 10 installed, location services are enabled by default, and may allow you to track down your stolen computer. Good luck, and stay secure!

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  • How does the author determine the current address of the laptop in order to connect to it? A IPv4 address owned by an ISP will come back as the location of the ISP not the actual person assigned to it. rying to determine the location of a theft is not productive, they won't be successful, even if they could get the ip address of the laptop. – Ramhound Aug 30 '16 at 18:47
  • I've edited my post further. Take a look. – var firstName Aug 30 '16 at 18:47
  • @Ramhound I understand it won't find the exact location, but it will at least get them the ISP and county. – var firstName Aug 30 '16 at 18:49
  • How do I use IP Chicken to find the IP of a computer other than the one I am currently using? – C. Akselrud Aug 31 '16 at 20:41
  • I was recommending you use it if you're able to remote into the work PC. Try getting the location by going to account.microsoft.com/devices/ – var firstName Aug 31 '16 at 20:43

Just found out about this for Windows 10. Wish I had known sooner. Will be setting this up for future use.


Any comments about the limitations of this service?

Also, suggestions on how to set up constant Remote Access on a laptop (without IP, which changes frequently)?

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  • I included this in my post, referring to Windows 10's "Find my Device" feature. – var firstName Aug 31 '16 at 20:47
  • You could use a tool like Chrome Remote Desktop, or TeamViewer. Any of these services will only work over a network connection. – var firstName Aug 31 '16 at 20:52
  1. shut down your work desktop or close the remote desktop port or limit the port for one ip only (your current)
  2. you know, it's your system
  3. ^2.
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