Have you ever connected your smartphone/tablet to a charging station in public places? If you have done that before, STOP doing that again. You could be putting your device at risk of being hacked!
You see, when you connect your device to the charging port, you are not only allowing electricity to flow through to charge your device. If behind the charging port lies a hidden rogue computer, it can also secretly communicate with your device. If there is a security hole in the operating system of your device, that hidden rogue computer can exploit that to hack into your device. Once your device is hacked, your private and confidential information can be exfiltrated by the hacker.
So, if you connect your device to a charger, how do you know that the charger is just a charger and not a computer pretending to be a charger? If it is your own charger, you can be sure that it is not a computer. But what about the chargers found in public charging kiosks? There’s no way you can tell from appearance.
What is the solution?
There is a nifty little device called the “USB Condom”. It is a small and unobtrusive dongle that sits between your device and the untrusted charging port, allowing your device to be recharged without fear that your data will be stolen or your device infected with malware. It works by electronically disabling the connector’s data pins, which converts your charge/sync cable into a charge-only cable, and thus prevents data from being exfiltrated to or from your device.
For USB charging ports, you can get the USB Condoms here:
For USB-C charging ports, you can get USB-C Condoms here: