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Beware of cyber attacks while charging phones!

Wednesday, June 12, 2019
By Zuber Ansari

Cyber experts are using the term ‘juice jacking’ which allows the malware to get transferred while the phone is being charged from such public-utility points.

Cell phone users will have to exercise caution as the cyber experts have issued a warning to avoid charging phones from common plug-points like the aiports, restaurants etc as cell-phone can get vulnerable to malwares.

Cyber experts are using the term ‘juice jacking’ which allows the malware to get transferred while the phone is being charged from such public-utility points. Experts point out that the device may function normal for a while but later, the malware starts performing it becomes troublesome to get rid of it.

“Through juice jacking, the phone gets vulnerable to all sorts of malware like adware, bots, spyware and phishing. Plugging into a public USB cord is like picking any random stuff on the side of the road and meddling with it without even without having the knowledge about its content. Juice jacking broadly performs three things - installation of malware, transmit other unwanted data and steal your personal information and other data,” said a cyber expert.

Experts have listed certain guidelines like charging the phone from a wall electric outlet using an adapter or always carrying a personal charger but the lack of awareness among the users results in lack of reportage of such cases. “The real issue apart from malware installation is the threat of ransomware which may emerge after critical data slips into the hands of miscreants. Speaking about Mumbai specifically, no such instance have come into the light but preparedness is required. People fail to discover about the presence of unknown devices behind the USB wires which cause the unwanted trouble, said top officer from Mumbai Police,” added the expert.

They have suggested users to keep their personal chargers along with USB which prevents accidental data exchange when your device is plugged into any source and it also helps by blocking the data pin in the USB cord and allowing only power to flow through.

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