A computer repair shop called Leapfrog Computers in Westhoughton had a notebook bought in by a customer for repair. While examining the machine the shop found a CD hidden between the keyboard and the mainboard that was labeled “Home Office Confidential”. The contents of the disc were reportedly encrypted as were the contents of the computer.
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The repair shop called the police when they found the disc and turned the notebook and CD over to police. Lee Bevan, managing director of Leapfrog Computers, in Westhoughton, near Bolton, said: "A customer brought a notebook into our repair shop. In between the keyboard and the circuit board we found a CD that said 'Home Office highly confidential. We put it in the CD drive to check it wasn't bogus but it was encrypted. We put it in the safe and called the Metropolitan Police. The notebook has been bought on eBay by this customer.”
While an investigation is ongoing into how exactly the laptop, apparently stolen from the Home Office and sold on eBay went missing to begin with. A home Office spokeswoman said, “We understand that encrypted IT equipment has been handed to Greater Manchester Police. Both the laptop and the disc were encrypted, thus safeguarding any information that might be stored on them.”
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