Protect Your USB Drive From Autorun Viruses

Protect Your USB Drive From Autorun Viruses

Hey guys :D back with  another one. This one is a little trick you can use to protect your USB drives. ;) We all know that viruses are such a pain, And Autorun viruses although they are not as harmful as other viruses out their, it’s just f***ing annoying :P Booooooooo. They spread fast through USB drives and can really mess up your day.

So this is a small easy to do trick with Windows Security Permissions that you can do to lock down your USB disk and stop it from falling to a victim to a autorun virus. So lets get started :D

First, for this to work your USB disk need to have the NTFS file system. If you don’t have it formatted to NTFS, that should be your first step. Plug in the USB disk and Right Click on the icon and select Format. From the format dialog box in the File System section select NTFS and check off Quick Format and click on Start.

Format your USB Disk

For some reason, if you don’t see the NTFS file system option in the list. You need to do the following. On My Computer right click on the icon for the USB disk and select Properties. Then in the Properties dialog box go to the Hardware  tab and from the All disk drives list select your USB Disk and click on Properties button.

USB Disk Properties

This will take you to another properties dialog box and in the General tab there will be a button called Change Settings. Click on the button and you will be taken to the same dialog box with a new tab added to it.

USB Disk Properties - Edit Settings

In the new properties dialog there will be a Policies tab. In this tab you will see 2 removal policies listed. By default yours should be Quick Removal.  Change this to Better Performance policy and click OK. And also click ok on the first property dialog too. Now you should be able to format the USB disk with NTFS file system.

Change the Policy.

After you format the USB disk, create a Folder in the USB disk root. Call it what ever you want ( Here I have named it as Data :) ).

Create a new folder on your USB Disk

Then again go to My Computer and right click on the USB disk icon and select Properties but this time go to Security tab. There in the Group or Usernames section you can see user group Everyone is there. Select it and click on Edit button.

Remove the permissions from the USB disk root.

In the Permissions dialog you get keep only Read permission checked and uncheck all the other permissions.

Give only Read access to the root.

The click Ok on both dialog boxes and exit out of them. Just for fun try to send a file to the USB disk ;) heheeee :D Then open your USB drive and select the folder you created earlier and right click and go to Properties. Then you will be taken to the Properties dialog for the folder and there go to the Security tab and as before select Everyone from the Group and usernames list and click edit. Then permission dialog for the folder will appear and there give All permissions to the folder by checking all the check boxes.

Provide all permissions to  the folder.

Now click Ok  and exit out of all dialog boxes and you are done :D So now, Hope you have tried sending a file to the USB disk :D I was not sent right. That’s right. You don’t have the permissions to do so. And the system can’t too. That mean you or any thing else can’t copy files to the root of the USB disk. You will get the error message bellow. And any autorun viruses from an infected computer can’t copy it self on to your USB disk either. :D

You don;t have the permission to copy to the root of the USB disk

You may ask, how the hell am I suppose to use the disk if I can’t copy anything to it…? Hold your horses dude you can. :P You have to copy the files you want to the folder you created on the USB Drive. :D (in my case it’s the Data folder). See problem solved ;)

But there are few drawbacks. :( you can not use the Send to command from the context menu when you right click on a file to send it to the USB disk. That’s a functionality you have to sacrifice to protect your USB disk.

A word of caution

This trick will protect you from any autorun virus that will infect your USB disk by adding a autorun.inf file and other related virus files to your USB disk’s root. BUT, it WILL NOT protect you from other harmful viruses like warms, Trojan horses etc. that use different methods to infiltrate your systems. So don’t blame me if that kind of a virus gets you :P :D

So always install a good antivirus program and keep it up-to date. :)

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