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The lost USB trick: this is how this dangerous attack works

We can be victims of many online scams and our computers suffer from a wide variety of cyber attacks. One of them is through connecting a simple pen drive. But how does the lost flash drive trick work? We are going to talk about how hackers use it to sneak malware onto our computers so they can steal passwords or cause system malfunctions.

Forgotten flash drive method

We have all used a flash drive at some point. In this type of memories we can save files or any document. For example, if we are going to go to a store to print something or we want to pass a job to a classmate. They even serve to transfer files from one computer to another.

Therefore, the fact that it is something so widely used and common also means that hackers set your sights here. They can use the trick of leaving a forgotten flash drive anywhere and pretend that it is lost. For example in a cafeteria, library, university or directly on the street.

The objective is that whoever finds it connects it directly to their computer to see what is there. Maybe even in an act of good will use it to see if there is some kind of data to know how to return it. But of course, just with that small gesture you can see how your computer is infected with a malware.

In recent times there has been a increase in these types of attacks. A USB memory actually costs very little money, so an attacker can use it as a physical bait for the victim to install malware or access a computer. In this way they can later obtain an economic benefit.

Data theft and revenue

What could a hacker do with a USB stick left lying on the street? They may contain malware that runs automatically as soon as you connect it to your computer. For example they could steal personal datasomething that is very valuable today, and put them up for sale on the Internet.

They can also use it as input for the ransomware. These types of threats aim to encrypt files and systems. Later they ask for a financial ransom to free them, something that can affect both home users and even large companies and organizations that see their computers become unusable.

Hackers may even simply want to carry out evidence. They use those who find those memories as guinea pigs and can carry out different attacks to, in the future, implement it on a large scale and reach more victims. A way to refine whatever malware they’re creating, for example. You can see that there are different methods to infect with a flash drive.

In short, taking a flash drive that we find and plugging it into our computer is not a good idea. It is possible that someone has left it there with the aim that we take it and infect our system. It is important not to make these types of errors and keep our system protected at all times with a good antivirus, in addition to everything being updated to correct possible vulnerabilities.

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