Anyone in tech has seen the reports and news about USB sticks with a virus ruined a company network or infect computers. Google built a small and affective feature into their latest Chromebooks.
The USBGuard is a feature which blocks interaction between the mass storage device and the Chrome operating system. The OS will give power to the device, but not let data transmit.
The USBGuard blocks this activity when the Chromebook is in locked mode. When the Chromebook is not in lock mode, the USB will interact as expected as a read/write device.
Several years back we did a blog post about the difference between CRC Verification and Checksum Verification. You can see the original article here.
Today, we found a SlideShare of the same article.
For those in a situation where you plug devices into unknown USB ports, a USB data blocker is a good thing to have around. Or some call it the USB condom!
This is a physical device that sits between the USB host connection and your device. The data blocker enables the power pings of a USB socket, but not the data lines. This means your device will get the power it needs, but without the possibility of infection via data transfers.
For example, if you are at a client’s office and need to connect your device to a USB port and don’t want to risk anything, use the USB data blocker. You’ll get the power, but without the risk of spreading or getting a virus.
Not much use for those who surround themselves with a trusted environment, but for those on the move, I think it’s a great product.