Malware-infected USB drives distributed at security conference

Summary:The folks at Australian mega-telco Telstra are wiping eggs from their faces after distributing malware-infected USB drives to attendees at this year's AusCERT security conference.AusCERT's marketing manager Claire Groves confirmed the USB sticks came certified pre-owned (thanks Dan Geer) and were given out at a tutorial at the conference.

Certified pre-owned: USB stick malware
The folks at Australian mega-telco Telstra are wiping eggs from their faces after distributing malware-infected USB drives to attendees at this year's AusCERT security conference.

AusCERT's marketing manager Claire Groves confirmed the USB sticks came certified pre-owned (thanks Dan Geer) and were given out at a tutorial at the conference.

"It was only yesterday at (a) tutorial," she said. "Telstra handed out USB sticks which they didn't know were infected."

"As soon as they found out they recalled them," Groves added.

According to a SearchSecurity report, the malicious file was of the "autorun" variety, programmed to be run automatically when removable  drives are inserted into a computer.  According to estimates, about one-tenth  all malware is designed to use portable storage media, such as removable USB drives, as an attack and spread vector.

Hat tip to Drazen Drazic of the Beast or Buddha blog.

* Image credit: jacobgarcia's Flickr photostream (Creative Commons 2.0)

Topics: Hardware, Malware, Security

About

Ryan Naraine is a journalist and social media enthusiast specializing in Internet and computer security issues. He is currently security evangelist at Kaspersky Lab, an anti-malware company with operations around the globe. He is taking a leadership role in developing the company's online community initiative around secure content managem... Full Bio

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