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+ - Scary USB marketing device 8

Submitted by snookerhog
snookerhog (1835110) writes "My boss just came back from a trade show and passed me one of these USB marketing devices. I assumed that it was just a micro flash drive that had some web links or PDFs on it so I stuck it in my computer. After a brief delay and quick driver install, my Run window (Windows 7) opened on its own and typed in a URL to the advertising company's website. This little device is not a storage media, but a crafty little keyboard emulator.

this tech is new to me and it seems pretty scary, especially since I am logged in to my computer with admin rights. Anyone else played with one of these?"
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Scary USB marketing device

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  • eh'?
    I've made CD which will open a browser. You don't need a "keyboard emulator".
    Autorun.bat has been able to do this since we were both in diapers.

    • eh'?
      I've made CD which will open a browser. You don't need a "keyboard emulator".
      Autorun.bat has been able to do this since we were both in diapers.

      Not on Windows 7 it can't. Autorun only brings up a dialog asking what you want to do with the CD, with the thing listed in autorun.inf listed at the top.

    • Of course, this has nothing to do with Autorun. (another reply already notes that Autorun on 7 (and Vista) pops up the choice dialog anyway (and XP can easily be configured to do so.))

      It's a keyboard emulator. Put differently - it's 'a keyboard'.. except that instead of a person typing on it, a little chip is doing the typing.
      This would probably work on Linux as well, if the Linux distro of choice happens to respond to the keycodes in the same manner as Windows, and the device were smart enough to interfac

    • by Trogre (513942)

      I think you've missed the point. This is a *hardware* device that can take over your computer, not some media that relies on an autorun service (which no computer should ever have enabled anyway).

      How would you go about protecting yourself from one of these? Disable the USB keyboard/mouse driver? Write some crafty udev rule that allows exactly one keyboard or mouse at a time?

      I see this article has been tagged, "dontrunasadmin". That advice is of absolutely no help, as whatever account you use, that's whe

  • yubikey (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mattdm (1931) on Friday October 15, 2010 @03:08PM (#33911420) Homepage

    I think that's more annoying than scary. But there's legitimate uses for similar technology. For example, the Yubikey [yubico.com] generates one-time passwords that work with open source server software.

    The Fedora Project now accepts this as an authentication method for contributors. See: http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Infrastructure/Yubikey [fedoraproject.org].

  • ... pretty scary, especially since I am logged in to my computer with admin rights. Anyone else ...

    So you stick a shady USB device while logged in with admin rights?

    Dude, WTF?

  • You obviously don't spend enough time on ThinkGeek. . . http://www.thinkgeek.com/computing/usb-gadgets/ae83/ [thinkgeek.com]
    • by Konsalik (1921874)
      Your point being? The thinkgeek one is a little prank device. In other words you wont normally find it being handed to you as if it was a flash drive. You could do some pretty malicious things with something like this.

We don't know one millionth of one percent about anything.

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