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Dangerous New USB Malware

Data security through the internet is one of the most volatile industries in today’s world. Bug exploits, malicious code, and all kinds of data stealing programs being born through the constant fluidity of web content has led to many companies and organizations removing their valuable information from the grid altogether. A new threat on the hardware front however, may prove to be a challenge for even this avenue of data protection.

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A new malware sample, appropriately named “USB Thief”, was discovered by researchers at the award-winning ESET security firm. As its name implies, the malware is completely USB-based, meaning it spreads only through devices plugging in through the USB ports of a computer.

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Create your own Custom USBs

Branding products isn’t a new concept in today’s marketing world, but Nexcopy has made it a lot more accessible to brand one of the most versatile pieces of technology in the industry. With the new USB7P full color inkjet printer, anyone can bring their designs or images to life on their flash drives. Below is a video illustrating the product with its features and benefits.

For more information about customizing this video for our reseller channel, please contact Nexcopy directly.

Source: Nexcopy Inc.

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The USB is Write Protected: Why?

USB write protected means the USB cannot be written to. But why?

There are really only two reasons why a USB stick is write protected.

#1 The USB is corrupted in some way and is no longer working properly. It’s actually very easy to destroy a USB stick and the most common way is sending multiple write threads to the device. So for example, you decide to copy a bunch of files form your computer to your USB stick. While that data transfer is going on, you give another request to write data to the flash drive. If the second request doesn’t write protect the USB, then try sending a third command, all at the same time of course, and this will certainly write protect the drive.

#2 The USB is write protected by design. Meaning the content owner (person who put data on the drive) made the stick read only. Read only is another way of saying write protected.

USB Write Protectedv

How you make a working USB stick write protected is sending a

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Question: Format a Flash Drive as exFAT or NTFS?

Most of the time formatting a flash drive is a very simple decision. There are only two situations where you should take consideration on what format to use. Here are the details:

Note: This article is focused towards Windows and Mac operating systems.

The file formats available for a flash drive are:

  • FAT (also called FAT16)
  • FAT32
  • exFAT
  • NTFS
  • HFS (Mac only)

Flash drive manufacturers format a drive as either FAT or FAT32. Any device of 2GBs or smaller will be formatted as FAT and any USB over 2GBs will be formatted as FAT32.

exFAT, USB

These two formats are the best file system for removable drives like flash drives because they support the quick disconnect function and chances are very slim you will destroy the device or files if you unplug the USB without using the Eject function (in Windows) or Un-mount function (in Mac).

The one huge limitation with FAT and FAT32 is the single file size limitation. If a single file is larger than 2GBs you need to have the device as FAT32. If you have a single file bigger than 4GBs then you must use NTFS or exFAT. Typically these large files are either video files or restore image files (for restoring a computer operating system from a single image file).

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Trained Dogs to Sniff Out SD Cards and USB Sticks

USB stick, dog

Police dogs have yet another smell they must detect. Tactical Detection K9 company now trains dogs to sniff out SD cards and USB sticks. The training is in response to better assisting law enforcement in child pornography investigations.

The percentage of a dog’s brain which is devoted to analyzing smells is 40 times greater than humans. For example, humans can detect about 5 million scents and a German Shepherd can detect around 225 million smells.

In a recent investigation a dog was used in the FBI raid of the home of the former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle in Hancock County, Indiana.

What could take investigators hours to find an SD card or USB stick in a house would take a trained dog considerably less time, probably no more than 30 minutes.

According to Tactical Detection K9 it took scientists over four years to isolate the odor associated with memory devices. Now that a specific odor has been identified it takes 8-9 months for a dog to be trained in picking up that scent.

A dog which can sniff out SD and USB sticks can cost upwards of $9,000.

Source: IB Times and Dummies.com .

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How To: Make a USB Read Only

There are two ways to make a USB stick read only. One way is a universal solution and is 100% permanent, the other way is PC specific and a good deterrent. When we say 100% permanent, this means the USB stick is read only (write protected) on all computers, whether it be a Mac, PC, Linux, etc type computer, the USB is read only and the status cannot be changed. The other method flags a USB device to be read only in relationship to the PC it is connected to so that whenever that USB stick is connected to that computer, it makes the USB read only and blocks all write commands to the device.

Most times an IT manager or content owner wants the USB stick to be read only so the files cannot be deleted or formatted off the drive. Another reason for making a USB read only is for the original files to remain the same and blocks the ability for files to be changed or manipulated. Finally, it’s smart to have USBs read only so that virus’ don’t jump onto the drive and possibly spread to other computers.

Let us start with the less permanent way because it’s easier to do and doesn’t require any specific hardware. You will need a Windows7 machine or higher. The Windows7 machine will have DiskPart utility which allows us to perform all sorts of cool things to flash drives, like setting write protection.

  • Connect the USB to your Windows computer.
  • To begin, go to your Windows Start and in the Search Field type “cmd”

This will run your Command prompt.

  • Next, you will want to get to the C root of the Command prompt and if you are signed in as a user you can simply type cd\ this will get you back to the root of the C drive.
  • Type DISKPART
  • Type LIST DISK

Now you will need to find the USB stick connected to your PC. Most likely it’s DISK 1

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How Flash Memory Works

This is a great video that explains how flash memory works. Granted, the video is very technical but does work through the concept of reading and writing data to flash. So if you have the 17 minutes to use, I suggest giving this a watch. The video does cover SLC, MLC and TLC memory and how each of these technologies read and write with the different layers of a floating gate device like NAND. Source: YouTube. Continue Reading

Video: USB Inkjet Printer for USB Swivel Drives by Nexcopy

Video: Nexcopy USB7P inkjet printer for USB swivel drives.

Nexcopy introduces the USB Clip Printer – a full color, inkjet printer that brings vibrant custom logos and graphics to any standard USB swivel drive – and it’s all available from your desktop.

The USB7P was engineered to address full color printing to USB flash drives at an affordable price. The idea is simple. Using the body of the standards swivel drive you swap the metal clip from your supplier for the inkjet printable clip from Nexcopy. Now, with an inkjet printable clip you can print full color images, on both sides of the clip, from any jpeg image. The results are fantastic. The print is durable and the print is highly

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5 Realistic Looking USB Airplane Flash Drives

Promotional items have been around for years. Coffee mugs, pens, etc are still the default item for marketing manager without an imagination. Back in 2000 the flash drive was the new kid on the block for swag. Flash forward five years and the USB stick was a bit like the coffee mug, old and boring. At about this same time manufacturing processes started improving for using silicon as a moldable material. This is where the custom flash drive started gaining popularity. As time move along, the process and technology got even better. Today we are seeing some fantastic promotional items in the shape of logo’s, parts, products and even airplanes. Today we list five realistic looking USB airplane designs that would get any marketing manager excited about a promotional flash drive. Let’s take a look large cabin cruiser airplane usb, flash drive Here is the Pilatus airplane flash drive airplane, pilatus Here is a Hawker airplane usb airplane, hawker Here is the F16 and F35 planes designed by Lockheed Martin usb jet, F16   usb jet, F35 These are all very impressive designs and certainly a piece of swag any trade show junkie, or even executive, would love to have. Times have certainly changed. The source for these designs is through a company named www.USBCOPIER.com and these products or any customized design can be created, just contact them. Continue Reading

Corsair Brings USB and microUSB Stick to CES 2014

Corsair continues their reputation for high speed, high quality USB products.  This year at the CES 2014 show Corsair is showing off their new Voyager Go USB drive. Two improvements with this device: 1)  The USB includes a standard USB connector and a microUSB connector.  This addition makes it easier to store files from a portable device directly to the flash memory. 2)  The USB cap and USB body include a loop so when connected with a lanyard you no longer have the option to lose the cap.  This is the first that I’ve seen with a cap/body configuration like this…and it should have happened years ago. Corsair USB The Corsair Voyager Go USB is available as a 3.0 device in 16, 32 and 64GB capacity.  USB 3.0 can boost transfer speeds in excess of 135MB/s however we must realize this spec is not real-world environment. Corsair microUSB Source:  Corsair, CES. Continue Reading

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