Forum Thread: What Is BadUSB?

Can someone explain what BadUSB is? I know it have something to do with plugging a USB into a computer and then it can issue commands, the attacker can access the camera and microphone, etc. but how does it work and is it available to the public? Thanks!

10 Responses

Its a USB flash drive that has had its firmware reflashed to appear to be a keyboard or other usb device

It is exploit for USB software - your flash drive acts as HID - human interface device (for example keyboard) and types very very fast. You can deploy a lot of client-side attacks.

Something really simillar is called "rubber ducky" by hak5 or teensy. It is modyfied (ducky) or not (teensy) arduino based board with microprocessor. You can use it like badUSB flash drive for client side attacks (very good during SE pentests in corporations to show, how dangerous can be picking drives from the ground) or to automate your sysadmin tasks (you can program it to run whatever command you want, so if you need to make backup simply plug in the teensy, wait few seconds and move to the next box).

Kali nethunter (only available on nexus devices currently) has both BadUSB and USB rubberducky attack capabilities. You just put the code in, attach the phone by USB then click execute.

So its only available on Nethunter not USB?

No, it's a feature added to nethunter (you can compile your own kernel and run it on other device than nexus) and exploit for flashdrives. On github you have proof-of-concept, so just google it, you can read which chips are vunerable to firmware swap and then... act!

Nethunter says the badUSB attack is based on an attack demonstrated at defcon so maybe they used a USB like device to execute it.

Good point, it is good to automate attack, when you are "inside" with someone's computer, but to perform SE attack you need something that looks more like a flash drive.. And cost like the flash drive ;D

Well in theory you could take your phone and say "hey can I plug this into your pc to charge it?" Plug in the usb-microUSB to your phone-their pc. Tap execute attack when they're not looking.

Of course you are right. There are a lot of vectors and usages. Be creative! And well just modify some scripts and attack will be really hard to detect (hiding terminal etc.)

Thank you guys for the information!

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