Serious USB Security Flaw Can Take Over Your Computer

By: | October 14th, 2014

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Did you know USB drives suffer from a serious security flaw? Named BadUSB, this flaw is so serious that it can evade all known effective defenses.

The Security Research Labs in Berlin reported that an infected USB drive can run unknown programs or even a virus file at computer startup to allow hackers to take control of your computer.

Versatility of UBS is also its biggest problem

In the last two decades, the USB has become the standard interface for electronic devices due to its versatility. But this versatility has become its worst problem now since one infected USB can infect other USB devices too.

USB is everywhere whether it is your computer, external hard drive, mouse, keyboard, cell phone charger, web camera or smartphone, there is a controller chip in every USB device that controls the USB connection to other devices.

These controllers have firmware, a software program that controls USB connection to other devices. This firmware can be reprogrammed to access files or issue commands. The infected computer and other peripheral can never be trusted again.

Currently, there is very little a user can do to save his devices from this attack since it is almost impossible to detect. The best course of action is to use 100% trustworthy USB devices.

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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