Security and privacy Main article: Laptop theft

Main article: Laptop theft
Because they are valuable, commonly used, portable, and easy to hide in a backpack or other type of bag, laptops are often stolen. Every day, over 1,600 laptops go missing from U.S. airports.[68] The cost of stolen business or personal data, and of the resulting problems (identity theft, credit card fraud, breach of privacy), can be many times the value of the stolen laptop itself. Consequently, the physical protection of laptops and the safeguarding of data contained on them are both of great importance. Some laptops, primarily professional and educational devices, have a Kensington security slot, which can be used to tether them with a security cable and lock. In addition, modern operating systems have features such as Activation Lock or similar that prevents the use of the device without credentials. As of 2015, some laptops also have additional security elements added, including biometric security components such as Windows Hello or Touch ID.[69]
Software such as GadgetTrak and Find My Mac have been engineered to help people locate and recover their stolen laptops in the event of theft. Setting one's laptop with a password on its firmware (protection against going to firmware setup or booting), internal HDD/SSD (protection against accessing it and loading an operating system on it afterward), and every user account of the operating system are additional security measures that a user should do.[70][71] Fewer than 5% of lost or stolen laptops are recovered by the companies that own them,[72] however, that number may decrease due to a variety of companies and software solutions specializing in laptop recovery. In the 2010s, the common availability of webcams on laptops raised privacy concerns. In Robbins v. Lower Merion School District (Eastern District of Pennsylvania 2010), school-issued laptops loaded with special software enabled staff from two high schools to take secret webcam shots of students at home, via their students' laptops