Want To Fry A Laptop? Use USB Killer 2.0
The Russian cybersecurity expert, Dark Purple, who created the devious USB Killer pen drive, has created a new version of the malicious hardware that can brick a device as soon as it is plugged in.
In a new blog post (link in Russian), the somewhat anonymous Dark Purple described his device, simply titled USB Killer v2.0. It doesn’t install any malware on your computer once you plug it in. Instead it sends a 220-volt charge through the USB’s signal lines and destroys the computer.
The original USB Killer, first revealed online back in March, administered 110 volts, which was more than enough to fry your computer anyway.
USB Killer looks quite inconspicuous, too, and could be easily mistaken for an average USB drive.
Dark Purple posted a short video demonstrating the USB in action, where he destroys the motherboard of a Lenovo Thinkpad X60 laptop, which he bought specifically for the test, in just a couple of seconds.
As viewers can see, the USB stick looks normal, and there are no outward signs it's malicious. But the USB Killer 2.0, as its creator calls it, takes computer attacks on a less-traveled road that leads to physical destruction. According to this post from The Daily Mail, an earlier and less powerful version of the device drew power from USB ports using a DC-to-DC converter until it reached negative 100 volts. At that point, the power was directed into the computer. The process ran on a loop until the circuitry failed.