Sometimes back this summer, Pakenham residents in Australia got USB Drives in their mail boxes. One fascinating thing is that none of the recipients had solicited for the storage devices.
These devices were smaller in size and promised that they could offer services such as Netflix. But the reality is that they had rogue programs designed to manipulate your computer and take control of it. The hostages had to pay a ransom for their computers to be set free.
This is a kind of new hack which the black hackers have developed to break into the computers that are too far to be reached.
But one factor highlighted by the hack is the danger posed by the thumb-size USB Drives.
The moment you plug a USB Drive into your computer, you may be opening avenues for possible hacks. Past studies have shown that people will plug in any USB drives they encounter. That is driven by the desire to get to see the contents.
During one research, 297 USB Drives were dropped close to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Of these, 45 percent were picked and plugged in the computers. At least one file was also opened.
One may be quick to laugh off these kinds of attacks but they do work. It is therefore important that it is addressed.
CompTIA, an IT trade association, also carried out a demonstrative study. It dropped 200 USB drives in locations with high traffic in U.S. cities.
20%v of these were picked, files in them opened and at least a link sending emails to listed address was clicked.
The CompTIA CEO, Todd Thibodeaux, later on responded saying that the actions may appear to be innocuous, but each has the potential to open the door to the very real threat of becoming the victim of a hacker or a cybercriminal.