Kenyans Warned Against Buying Over a Thousand Stolen Laptops


ContainerDid you record the serial number of your laptop when you bought it? Did you buy a new device, or you wanted to save some money like most of us who pick ones in mint condition? Well, because the majority of laptops do not have cellular radios as our phones, it is near impossible to track them down as it is the case with our smartphones where all you need is a proof of purchase and a police statement (carriers can pinpoint their location using their sophisticated system via IMEI) – unless you are willing to seek the services of pricey solutions that can do the tracking for you.

However, the entire exercise of following up on a lost phone is tedious and lengthy, and is even more complex for lost laptops, bearing in mind that people tend to use more money trying to locate them, which is even more taxing – so what do you do if you are a victim? You let things go and get yourself a new phone. Or computer.

Back to the issue at hand: a couple of days ago, some of you may have heard that a shipment of 1140 laptop computers was stolen from a container depot in Nairobi. These are many computers that were obviously whisked away in an arranged and careful manner, and if the post on the dailies is anything to go by, the thieves have not been nabbed. The ad does not say whom or which company the shipment belongs to.

The post in the Daily Nation, which covers two pages, is warning people from purchasing a laptop whose serial numbers appear in there. The warning may be effective for virtuous people, but we need to be realistic about those who have access to this information, have a plan to buy a new laptop, and are willing to countercheck the numbers with the publication.

Also, going by the responses linked to the tweet above, buyers, through no fault of their own, will most likely not know they are purchasing stolen laptops.

Either way, buyer beware because the law is never forgiving to people who buy stolen property.