SAS veteran Andy McNab had his laptop stolen when a thief smashed the window of his Audi Q7 and raided two other cars in the West London area.
"If you get caught, and I hope you do, don't start whining to your probation officer that you had a bad start in life and that's why you turned to crime," he said.
The newspaper also quoted a detective working on the case, who said: "I just hope we catch this chancer before Andy does."
However, Jamie Cowper, director of European marketing at encryption specialist PGP, said that it could be McNab who has to worry.
"He is obviously ex-SAS and knows about security, but is he just hiding behind a Windows password when it comes to his laptop?" he told vnunet.com.
Cowper also asked whether it was sensible to highlight the theft in a national newspaper. "Is there now value in the content?" he asked.
"The vast major of laptop theft is not for the content, but it is not difficult to crack these things using software downloaded from the internet."
Cowper also questioned whether there would be any encryption on the PC, as only about 10 per cent of corporate users have the technology installed on their machines.
"And these are people who have it pushed out to them by the IT department," he said.
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