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How hackers can attack your laptop with USB stick

March 19, 2020

The other day a coworker told me about one of the new techniques that current hackers are using. It turns out that they keep a “harmful hacker file” on a USB stick and leave it “forgotten” on the street.

USB flash drives have become a fundamental tool for anyone in their day-to-day work. Their lower price and increased capacity have made them one of the most useful tools. All this makes finding a “free” USB stick a very juicy treat. But watch out! That this “gift” can damage your computer or much worse.

Hackers can put a hidden file on the Pendrive or an executable program capable of getting into your browser history, seeing your passwords and sending them using your WIFI. And all this without you knowing. 

USB Killers, a weapon against your information

There is another modality called USB Killers whose objective is not to steal your information but directly destroy the information on your computer. There are many ways such as creating recurring files (files that make copies of itself) until it leaves you with no space, working the hard drive at high speeds to raise the temperature and damage it, or directly attacking your Regedit (Windows utility that controls registers and settings of your programs). Another modality is the one that destroys the USB port to which it is connected, increasing the temperature until it is “scorched” and useless. Be that as it may, the result is the same, trying to damage your computer.

That is why, if you find a “forgotten” flash drive, it is best to take it to the police or lost objects. In this way, you will help the person who has lost it (if they have truly lost it) and avoid a problem if the loser is a hacker who wants to annoy us.

Concussion

First of all, nevermore forget your laptop neglected in public places.
The countermeasure to restrict USB stick attacks from occurring is not to collect random USB sticks from the ground, or indeed if you find one in your pocket.
Secondly, never leave your laptops or mobile devices unattended in public places.

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