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  • Helds hostage by employee's

    I know a person, who is being "held hostage" by 2 of his employee's ....30 years in biz and they will not give him access to anything on their PC's....They will not give up passwords,,,They have their PC's BIOS password protected. This truley is a long story. In a nutshell the owner is "older" and has no computer knowledge at all. He wants to terminate them,,,but is afraid to, as they might destroy 30 years of data,,,,What would you do?
    Last edited by Suzi; 10th April 2008, 04:26. Reason: spelling

  • #2
    Re: Helds hostage by employee's

    There's no real way around a BIOS password. He should know the full value of the info on those computers (and make sure he's insured for it), and get a good lawyer probably. They are blackmailing him (holding his own data hostage), which is illegal in some countries.

    However, assuming the information on the drives aren't encrypted, he can take the computers to a technician, and they can move the hard drives to a different computer and easily get off the data.
    ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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    • #3
      Re: Helds hostage by employee's

      Wired,,,thanks for the speedy reply.....Any recomendations as to what type of lawyer? There is one tower that I can remove the drive from to look at and copy files, if they are encrypted, a lawyer can deal with that...but the other is a Laptop,,,,there is a identical LT on site, is it possible to "swap" the drives to view the data?
      Thanks!

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      • #4
        Re: Helds hostage by employee's

        What country are you in? This may help us to provide better advice.


        THIS IS IMPORTANT.

        If and when the owner "terminates" them, tell him not to give them any warning. Have a couple of large security guards come in and escort them out of the building. Do NOT let them touch their computers or any other equipment in the building. Disconnect the computers from the network in case they have set up remote access and this will stop them from gaining control of the computers once they have been removed from the premises.
        1 1 was a racehorse.
        2 2 was 1 2.
        1 1 1 1 race 1 day,
        2 2 1 1 2

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        • #5
          Re: Helds hostage by employee's

          Talk to any lawyer and they can recommend the correct type of lawyer.

          Yes on both tech questions.
          ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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          • #6
            Re: Helds hostage by employee's

            I really can not imagine that!!

            You can get behind the BIOS password depending on the BIOS manufacturer. I remember they used to havea default password.

            If data is encrypted, it will be a long story to solve!!

            I suggest cloning the harddisks before doing any operation.

            They do not perform backups?
            Best regards,
            Mostafa Itani

            ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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            • #7
              Re: Helds hostage by employee's

              Many bios passwords can be wiped just by removing the power and the battery on the motherboard.
              cheers
              Andy

              Please read this before you post:


              Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

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              • #8
                Re: Helds hostage by employee's

                or just unscrew the harddisk and place it into an other computer?
                goodbye bios password...
                Reset the administrator password, see the password forum.

                However, follow wired and biggles advices about the legal manners.
                Marcel
                Technical Consultant
                Netherlands
                http://www.phetios.com
                http://blog.nessus.nl

                MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
                "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

                "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
                "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

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                • #9
                  Re: Helds hostage by employee's

                  yes absolutely. Just wanted to mention the power option in case there wasn't a spare pc.
                  cheers
                  Andy

                  Please read this before you post:


                  Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Helds hostage by employee's

                    Andy, we were writing our posts at the same time i guess.
                    Marcel
                    Technical Consultant
                    Netherlands
                    http://www.phetios.com
                    http://blog.nessus.nl

                    MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
                    "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

                    "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
                    "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Helds hostage by employee's


                      You may be correct there!
                      cheers
                      Andy

                      Please read this before you post:


                      Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Helds hostage by employee's

                        default BIOS passwords are really an anachronism, but using the reset bios jumper on the motherboard is still a valid solution.

                        also there are a few debug scripts that will nullify the bios password, once in the system
                        ________
                        Volcano digital review
                        Last edited by DYasny; 6th March 2011, 18:28.
                        Real stupidity always beats Artificial Intelligence (c) Terry Pratchett

                        BA (BM), RHCE, MCSE, DCSE, Linux+, Network+

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                        • #13
                          Re: Helds hostage by employee's

                          Thank you all,,,for your replies.

                          The LT is the system that has a BIOS password, and I do not feel confident enough to crack the case to pop the battery,,,,my thought is to take the HDD and swap it out to the other identical LT. The tower, I can pull the drive, read and copy files from another system....I just pray that the files are not encrypted....

                          As I stated earlier, there is a long story to this.

                          I am looking into a lawyer today.

                          The employee's involved,,,are in control of everything,,,,backup, payroll,,,contacts, contracts etc. It is truely a nightmare. The owner, is completely computer illiterate.
                          He only knows how to read his email and print checks (he couldn't even print checks yesterday as they put restrictions on his account....

                          I reside in the USA.
                          Last edited by Suzi; 10th April 2008, 15:26. Reason: added info

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                          • #14
                            Re: Helds hostage by employee's

                            In the USA, people can be fired on a whim, almost. I would be waiting until they had all gone home, then calling them one by one and telling them not to return to work!

                            I would also try to ensure that I had someone "on side" who could disable their accounts/remote access/anything else and changing admin passwords etc so that they could not get back in. It would be a huge cost to his business to do this, but the situation sounds intolerable - so intolerable that costs will be worth it.

                            The next thing he must do once these intolerable fools are gone is to hire someone to be in charge of his IT and pay them well to keep them on message.


                            Tom
                            For my own and your protection, I do not provide support by private message under any circumstances. All such messages will be deleted and ignored.

                            Anything you say will be misquoted and used against you

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                            • #15
                              Re: Helds hostage by employee's

                              If you're confident enough to crack the case to grab the hard drive, pulling the CMOS (BIOS) battery is not any more difficult... in fact it's probably easier. Look for the only disk shaped, removeable battery in the case and that will be the CMOS battery. It is more than likely a CR2032 battery so look for that designation stamped on the battery case. Pull it out for 60 seconds or so, put it back in, reboot and voila! No more BIOS password.

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