Illinois, You Need To Beware Of “Juice Jacking”
A warning from the FBI affects everyone who has let their phone batteries run down.
A lot of us have let our phones get to a critically low battery level when we're out and about. It's an absolute "oh crap" moment and we're hustling to find somewhere we can plug it in (brownie points if you have the foresight to bring your charger). I've had to charge mine at the Moline and Chicago airports and a lot of shopping centers and hubs have public phone charging stations now. But especially as you're traveling for the summer, you'll want to listen to the FBI's latest warning.
But according to CBS News, there's a new warning from the FBI not to use the public phone charging kiosks at airports, hotels, or shopping centers.
The FBI says that cybercriminals could steal your data in what's known as "juice jacking". This is exactly why I'm paranoid about them anyway so I'll just deal with my phone scooting along on 10%.
These criminals can apparently use the USB to hack into your phone to install malware and monitoring software on your phone.
Stacy Arruda, former FBI cyber security caseworker, told CBS that it's likely keystroke monitoring, meaning they may not care about your emails or texts but they're watching what numbers you press when you enter stuff like bank account info.
How To Avoid That
It's an easy fix: carry your own charger and plug it into the wall. You can also use a power bank or get a charging-only cable.
It can be super tricky, if not impossible, to find an outlet at an airport gate to charge your phone in but even the FBI is saying you shouldn't go to the phone charging kiosks. The potential dangers of it are not worth the convenience.