The Real Hustle shows how easy it is to steal programs and warns owners to do more to protect instore PCs

BBC programme targets PC retailers

A BBC Three programme carried a poignant warning to computer store owners on Friday; protect your devices or risk the contents of any one of your display PCs having its hard drive, and all the programs on it, cloned.

Friday’s episode of the popular show saw BBC’s The Real Hustle programme visit a busy, albeit, unnamed store in London armed with just one concealed portable hard drive and a firewire cable and within minutes copy programs worth thousands of pounds such as Adobe’s CS2 from many of the on-display iMacs.

Speaking on the programme, security expert Marc Rodgers conceded that this affected businesses far more than it did retailers but warned that they should be proactive in preventing such crime. "The most common thing with this is somebody walking into a business and maybe taking an accounts database, or taking proprietary information, and copying it," he said.

"The idea that people can now walk around with tiny little devices that can store hundreds and hundreds of pages of data; in fact, hundreds of thousands of pages of data is quite a scary concept for most businesses, because what it means it, just one unguarded, maybe five minutes unattended access, and somebody has copied all of your most important data on your system and they’re walking out with it.

"So the most easy protection your typical computer store can put in place is a passworded screensaver, that means, a customer can not unattended, walk up, plug in and do something with your computer, because they have to remove the password in order to do anything."

The programme is available to UK citizens on BBC’s iPlayer until July 24th, by clicking here.

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