What is a Flash Drive Used For? More Than You Think.
Most of us view USB sticks as a convenient way to store, transfer, share and transport files from device to device. USB sticks, also known as jump drives, thumb drives and memory sticks, are very convenient “grab and go” devices for stored data. But storing and transferring files is no longer the only function flash drives can perform.
Uses of Flash Drives
- Unlock Your PC – With simple, free apps, you can transform your USB stick into a key for locking and unlocking your computer. Make it easier and safer to leave your computer unattended.
- Store and Protect Vital Documents – You can safely carry and transport large numbers of vital or private documents (especially when traveling) in a discreet way.
- Free Up Hard Drive and Flash Drive Space – As flash drives have increased storage capacity and reliability, they have become a fast and convenient way to free up space. This benefit might also:
- Improve Overall Windows Performance – By freeing up storage space, your Windows-based system will operate more quickly.
- Run Portable Apps Without Installing Them on Your Permanent Memory – In the past, all apps would work only if installed on your hard or flash storage drives. But now, USB flash drives have spawned the advent of portable apps and games that can be operated directly from the USB flash memory. This feature is very effective for always keeping your most essential apps handy.
- Install External Operating Systems – With a bootable USB drive, USB images can install a new operating system on your PC. This function can be particularly helpful if your system has been attacked by malware. In addition, USB flash memory is a great tool to help get infected or corrupted systems up and running again with clean data.
- Increase Memory in an Android Smartphone – With a USB “On-The-Go” cable, you can connect USB devices to your smartphone and expand their memory.
- Connect to Wireless Networks – Within Windows, you can save the name and password of your wireless network to your USB flash memory.
- Create Auto-Run Programs – Your USB stick can be configured to auto-run specific programs when you insert the stick into your computer’s USB port.
The convenience of USB flash memory technology comes with a price. The increased use of after-market hardware for both USB sticks and cables has opened an entirely new Pandora’s box of cyber security vulnerabilities. It has become easier for cybercriminals to attack your network by embedding hardware and software in these types of peripheral devices. Upon using a USB stick with pre-loaded malware, a cyberattack can commence as soon as you plug in the device.
Also, USB sticks have become inexpensive. So hackers have started leaving them randomly in parking lots, stores and other settings where someone might find them. They know that many users will not resist popping the “found” USB stick into their own devices, thus instantly enabling cybercrime.
Cyber security involves many layers of protection well beyond protecting your computer from cyberattacks. Nowadays, there are many moving parts to securing your network and all your devices, including flash memory sticks. Unfortunately, most small to midsized businesses have neither the time nor the expertise to handle cyber security on their own. Enlisting professional IT Consulting services will help you determine the right level of protection and ongoing security protocols to safeguard your hard-earned data on all your devices, wherever you go.
Every device connected to your network is a vulnerable access point for cybercriminals to breach. Mobile Device Management is now an integral part of cyber security. Computers and all your devices must also have established security protocols and defenses in place. With the expanded use of remote and work-from-home employees, having a team of IT experts to support your systems is imperative for a small to midsized business. Your IT support team can train your staff, update your software, inspect and monitor your hardware and provide iron-clad cyber security for all your devices and networks. GEEK-AID® Computer and Network Support specializes in customized Managed IT Services for small to midsized businesses. GEEK-AID®'s team of experts is comprised of top specialists in different areas of IT services, serving clients on-site and remotely for Macs, PCs and all your connected devices. The GEEK-AID® team doesn't clock out at five o'clock on Friday. They are available 24/7, remotely or in-person, to ensure your computers, network and data stay healthy and secure. As your business grows, expands its network and adds more devices such as smart controls, smart devices, wireless access and remote access, your network's cybercrime vulnerability and need for cyber security will grow, too. In addition to maintaining the hardware, software and security, employee training and regular IT support must be ongoing. New users and new devices will require additional training to use those devices efficiently. Hardware and software installation and maintenance, repair, cyber security and network protection are all related and must be consistent and proactive.
Call (877) GEEK-AID (877-433-5243) to evaluate and discuss all your IT needs before any of your devices fall victim to cyberattacks.