Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Top 6 USB Thumb / Flash drive Tips

For the vast majority of us, we all have at least one thing that we don’t want others to know about, that we would like to conceal from the rest of the world. It could be a sensitive document, school report, medial report or some other sensitive document that we refuse to entrust to another. Whatever this data may be, and whatever tactic you may have adopted in protecting it, a simple mistake such as misplacing your USB drive is all you need to do for all this information to be revealed. 

USB drivers are portable, small in size and very easy to use, with just about any device that has a USB port. This makes them the ideal device for you to use to transport your data, whether sensitive or not. Unfortunately, many people lose or misplace their USB drives, resulting in the total loss of any data they may have had on it. In this article, I outline several tips and tricks that you may want to adopt in securing your USB device and the data on it. 

Top 6 USB Thumb / Flash drive Tips
Top 6 USB Thumb / Flash drive Tips

1. Use a Password

Using a strong password is a reality that can never be overstated. Unless you adopt some form of encryption, there is no real way of protecting all of the data on your USB drive, as you would be your standard PC. In this particularly situation you’d want to use a security key to manually secure every file that you store on the USB drive. 

Microsoft Office has a built in password protection component, allowing you to password protect any document that you want. If you’re running Microsoft Word on Windows 8, all you need do is open up your document, click on File and you should see the option to password protect your document, it’s that simple. 

Make sure the password you use is complicated but memorable; you may also want to use a password manager, which you can use to save all your passwords to – as it makes life that much easier. 

2. Use a Custom Icon

If you use several USB drives on your system, or if you just want your USB drive to be more identifiable, then you may want to consider using a custom icon for it. In order to do this, you’ll need to add an .ico file to the drive. There are many tools that you can use to create an image and save it as this file type. 

Now whenever you plug your USB device into your system, that icon will appear to denote its existence. 

3. Use Flash Drive Reminder

I’m pretty sure that you’ve at least once, misplaced your USB drive and been forced to retrace your steps in an attempt to find out where it is. Well, there is a trick that you can adopt to avoid forgetting your USB device. This tick is called Flash Driver Reminder, it’s a small application that runs on the USB device and reminds you to unplug your USB drive after you have ended your session. 

This tool runs exclusively on Windows based systems. The moment you plug it into your computer, the app will automatically start and request your permission to run in the background. When your session comes to an end, the app will then prompt you with a pop-up, reminding you that you need to unplug your USB device. 

4. Consider Using DemocraKey

If you’re on your vacation or you’re someplace where privacy, tracking and security conditions are unknown to you, having DemocraKey on hand will come in handy. It’s basically a number of Windows based applications, including email client software, browser, and an image editor – tools that are designed to make browsing much more secure. 

5. Use USB Safeguard

USB safeguard is another excellent app designed to protect your USB device. This app is designed to sit inside your USB drive and requires no administrative privileges to be able to access data on any Windows based system. This tool is open source and uses 256 bit encryption, making it extremely difficult for hackers to crack. All you need to do is download the tool and run it directly from your USB flash drive, and then enter your desired password to lock your USB device. 

6. Synchronize Your Files

Syncing is a very smart trick for you to adopt, as it acts as protection against someone carrying away your sensitive data contained in the USB device. It also eliminates you having to constantly copy data back and forth from your USB drive and computer hard drive. There are tools such as Sync back which you can use to sync the files on your USB device with your hard drive. They give you the flexibility to copy or delete your USB data. 


Uchenna Ani-Okoye is a former IT Manager who now runs his own computer support website:

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