According to a report by Absolute Software, public schools are the number one location for thefts of laptop computers and other portable electronic devices, followed closely by colleges and universities, which took the number five spot1. When the Charlotte-Mecklenberg School District in North Carolina introduced a bring-your-own-technology program, so many thefts followed that local Police Chief Randy Hagler told the Charlotte Observer it was driving the community’s property crime numbers “out of sight.”
How to Choose a Secure Device Store and Charge Solution
Many facilities have a need to securely store and charge devices when they are not in use or are not permitted in certain areas. For education and privacy-sensitive settings where personal device use is restricted, a stationary cabinet or depot is ideal. With this type of storage, cellphones or other small personal devices and belongings can be placed in individual compartments with single key or passcode access. This type of storage can also include device charging within each compartment, so each user can charge their personal device while its being stored.
For more and larger devices such as tablets and laptops, a store and charge cart is a popular choice. Carts can offer the same high level of security as stationary cabinets but with the option to easily relocate the cart depending on where in the facility devices are needed. This mobility option is ideal for situations in which devices are shared among several groups of people in different locations, and where access is centrally controlled instead of granted to each individual. Internal reconfiguration options can also make the cart adaptable to changes in device sizes and quantities.
Make Sure It’s Secure
Because many options abound, it’s important to understand their security features before selecting one. A quick Google search of store and charge carts or stations will yield a number of results that vary in price from hundreds to thousands of dollars. To get the best storage for your needs and the most security out of your selection, make sure your choice includes the following.
Full-length hinges can prevent doors from being pried open because no space is available for a tool or pry bar to gain leverage. Full-length hinges also make doors sturdier and more stable when opening and closing.
Heavy duty steel construction
Steel construction is imperative not only as a deterrent for unlawful access but also for protecting the devices inside from damage during everyday wear and tear. Look for 16-gauge or 18-gauge steel as a standard starting point.
Front and rear locking
The front or main door to access devices should be just as secure as the rear access door where IT services such as power cord setup occur. Avoid products that don’t provide an equal amount of security on both access points.
For added security, stackable storage depots and taller stationary cabinets should be mounted to the floor or wall with heavy duty hardware equipped to handle to size and weight of the cabinet.
Whether storing personal cellphones or quantities of larger devices, the decision about which product to purchase should not be based on price alone. The way a store and charge unit is constructed says a lot about the amount of attention that has been paid to securing the devices inside. One final feature to look for is a lifetime warranty. A manufacturer that stands behind its products can make buyers feel just as secure about their purchase as they do about the protection of their devices.