Experts caution Russians about using USB drives

A malware-carrying USB drive can infect your computer with a dangerous virus, compromise financial data and even burn a computer down. has advised its readers to exercise caution when using USB devices they have received as gifts because they can be pre-infected with ransomware, viruses or other harmful software.

Infected USB drives remain a relevant way of unauthorized penetration into the system, says Pavel Korostelev, head of the Security Code product promotion department.

The expert believes attackers can use this kind of malware to disrupt your system as well as to hack your data. There are codes that can provoke a short circuit when the USB drive is plugged in, and that damages the motherboard. To avoid such risks, the expert advised formatting any USB drive you have received as a gift before use.

Sergei Matusevich, director of web technologies development at Artezio, noted that even new flash drives you buy in stores can contain malicious code. No-name devices are especially dangerous; bigger manufacturers monitor the quality of their products more responsibly, he added.

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