cyber security

FCC Warns Against Being ‘Juice Jacked’ on Free USB Ports

NBCUniversal, Inc.

Beware where you plug in when you're in public.

When your phone is running out of juice a free USB port can be a welcome sight. But the FCC is warning you could be "juice jacked," and it could cost you dearly.

Travelers with some time on their hands often plug in to charge up. The USB port provides a slower charge and the FCC is now warning it can also put all the data on a device in jeopardy.

A new cyber-theft tactic called "juice jacking" preys on people plugging in for a free USB charge. Cyber security experts say thieves can install malware, and people plug right into it.

Fai Chan says while the airport ports seems secure, one never knows.

"Even though the airport has tight security, we assume connections are secure, but we don't know," Chan said.

The Los Angeles District Attorney's Office is urging people to avoid the public ports.

Within minutes of plugging in, the malware could lock a device or send private information such as passwords, addresses or even a complete backup of the phone to criminals.

The DA's office said the best way to avoid being juice jacked is to charge devices on old fashioned power outlets.

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