Puzzled Australians Are Finding Malware-Laden USB Drives In Their Mailboxes

What do you usually find in your mailbox? Love letters? Bills? People in Victoria, Australia are finding malware-laden USB drives in their mailboxes, or “letterboxes” as they are called down under.

The Victoria police warned citizens about the malicious USB drives, stating, “The USB drives are believed to be extremely harmful and members of the public are urged to avoid plugging them into their computers or other devices.” Once the USB drives are plugged into a computer, they load a fake media streaming service as and create some “serious issues” for users.

usb sticks

It is unclear what exactly is on the USB drives or if anyone is specifically being targeted. It is also unknown what is the extent of the damage on the computers of the victims. According to a study conducted by the University of Illinois, forty-eight percent of people will pick up a random USB stick, plug it into their computer, and open the files contained on it.

Hacker

This tactic is traditionally used at companies, where unsuspecting employees plug in a flash drive, accidentally unleashing malware on the corporate network. It was also employed by the Russian delegation in 2013 at G20, an international forum for the governments and central banks of twenty major countries. The Russians hoped to secretly spy on the different heads of states, but their plan was uncovered.

This is not the first time someone has popped a malicious USB drive into someone’s mailbox. In April one Twitter user remarked, “Someone put a USB in my mailbox. No note, no nothing, just the USB… So tempted to see what’s on it. Would rather not have another broken device due to stupidity. So sorry usb, you’re probably going to into the garbage.”

This probably goes without saying, however, please use common sense and never insert a USB stick you find in your mailbox, or any other suspicious place, into your computer.

Tags:  Malware, USB
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