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Delete Data On Netbook If Stolen? 459

An anonymous reader writes "I have just moved overseas on a 2-year working holiday visa and so I picked up a netbook for the interim, an MSI Wind U100 Plus running WinXP. I love it to bits. But as I am traveling around I am somewhat worried about theft. Most of my important stuff is in Gmail and Google Docs; however, I don't always have Net access and find it useful to gear up the offline versions for both. Ideally I would like to securely delete all the offline data from the hard drive if it were stolen. Since it is backed up in the cloud, and the netbook is so cheap I don't really care about recovery, a solution that bricks it would be fine — and indeed would give me a warm glow knowing a prospective thief would have wasted their time. But it's not good if they can extract the HD and get at the data some other way. All thief-foiling suggestions are welcome, be they software, hardware, or other."

I have a theory that it's impossible to prove anything, but I can't prove it.