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Another strike against the Geek Squad and Best Buy

By Ben "Iron" Damper ·
From MSNBC.com this morning.

http://redtape.msnbc.com/2006/06/one_year_ago_ha.html#posts

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Shouldn't that be Geek Squad?

by kattoon In reply to Another strike against th ...

or did they change their name? :)

If they don't get their act together; there won't be a Geek Squad or even a Best Buy because they will be bankrupted by the lawsuits.

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Opps

by Ben "Iron" Damper In reply to Shouldn't that be Geek Sq ...

Sorry my typo on that one!! Yes it was suppose to be Geek Squad.

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With stuff like this

by Old Guy In reply to Shouldn't that be Geek Sq ...

I'm sure we could probably come up with more appropriate names for the "Squad"! Amazing.

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Another reason to be a DIY techie.

by Tink! In reply to Another strike against th ...

I do my best to do repairs myself, at home and at work. 3rd Party tech support is definitely last resort.

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yeah but

by jkaras In reply to Another reason to be a DI ...

you are at the mercy of the warrantee. Despite your accurate troubleshooting, you still have to dance to their tune if you want another part. They have the standpoint that the person doesnt know what is wrong and wants to avoid false reporting for free parts. Trust me when I say they dont know what they are talking about. I started in a call center for Gateway. I barely knew how to operate a computer and I was troubleshooting!!! It was all call scripts and a knowledge base website that told me what question and steps to take after every answer.

I dont know how they didnt wipe the drive. They should while onsite erase the disk infront of the customer with a erase utility. When they get sent back to be refurbished they should be wiped there also as redundancy. If someone uses a data restore program and actually retrieves info off it well that's the risk you take. WHy this guy had people's social security numbers and account numbers on the pc is beyond me. Maybe if he used Turbo Tax and that info was on there. No matter, it still is rather disturbing.

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True about the warranty

by Tink! In reply to yeah but

Unfortunately yes you'll void the warranty if you do your own repairs while under it. But past that it's your choice.

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And if you want the data recovered?

by gardoglee In reply to yeah but

Many users take in the machine not knowing what is wrong, but wanting their data recovered. It is easy to say that every PC user who wants to use TurboTax or Quicken or something similar should be required to be an expert in computer security. The real truth is that the sole reason we all have the opportunity to purchase these wonderful machines for under a million dollars is precisely because they are intende to not require specialized knowledge. Someone who has kept their data for several years on the hard drive, and isn't exactly sure where all of the backups are, and never actually installed the application software, and doesn't know where the installation disks are (if they ever got them in the first place)...in other words a typical user....is forced to trust a repair person. We all know that they should bring it to someone knowledgable and honest, but then again we also get sick of our friends wanting us to fix their computers for free, and they get sick of waiting six months for us to get around to fixing and returning it.

What will get BestBuy and the other vendors to change their tune is when they start to see some financial risk. That won't happen until there are enough lawsuits that their insurance companies start to raise their rates, or to refuse to indemnify them.

I often purchase from a local computer scrapper who for years has used military grade wiping software to clean drives. That was not surprising when their client list for disposal included banks, hospitals and the military. These guys recently stopped selling used drives simply because they were worried about the risk of lawsuits should some confidential data get out. Their insurer told them to cease selling used drives, or find another insurance company. Now they drill each drive with several holes, and then send the remains to be melted. It cost the local tech community a good source of cheap drives, but it was necessary.

When BestBuy, Circuit City and the others start to get sued, their liability insurance companies will make sure they get the message that proper disposal procedures are mandatory. Until then, people who don't have the skills to protect themselves will get burned.

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My first reaction

by jdmercha In reply to Another strike against th ...

Was the hard drive really toasted in the first place?

Maybe it was actually a software problem. Maybe the tech was not competent enough to figure it out. Or maybe there is just more profit in replacing a hard drive rather than rebuilding it.

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Kudos to the guy who bought the drive. . . .

by maxwell edison In reply to Another strike against th ...

.....and called the original owner.

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Why keep it?

by Gilsbugs In reply to Another strike against th ...

I don't understand why these companies would want the drive returned? If indeed it's dead, what? salvage?-not cost effective. If it's still useful, then I would assume that it should be criminal to reuse/recycle the drive. I totally agree, if the drive is called out as failed by their "techs", it should be handed over to the owner so he can properly dispose of it.

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