Secure your thumb drive easily
Almost everyone has a thumbdrive now and I think it’s safe to say that “thumb drive killed the floppy disk”. Nowadays you can get a 2GB Kingston thumbdrive for RM65 while for a 1GB it’s only RM40, and these prices are in KK, Sabah!
Anyway, what if you accidentally dropped your thumbdrive in public or somebody stole it from you, what kind of data or information that you will lose to some complete strangers? Enough to jeopardize your life or your career?
If you dread the day that you lose your thumbdrive then it’s time to seriously think about securing you data. If I lose my thumbdrive tomorrow or even later, I won’t have to worry as my storage is automatically locked and secured even when someone just snatch it off of the USB slot while I am at the washroom.
So what is this tool that I’m talking about? It’s called “USB Disk Pro” and I accidentally found it on pendrive‘s website, while helping my brother searching for some drivers.
This tool is actually made to work for a certain brand of thumb drives but I managed to make it work with mine. However, before I proceed, let me explain how this is supposed to work with the “official” thumbs.
It seems that certain brands of thumbdrive have been partitioned into 2 storage spaces, when you plug them in, the smaller sized partitioned is identified as the A: drive (and if you have an A: drive already, it will create a B: drive, and it goes on) while the other, bigger one is your normal USB storage device.
The smaller sized partition contains a small exe file that is used to secure the larger partition. To activate the protection, double-click on the exe file, set the password twice and it’s secured.
Whenever that thumb is plugged off and plugged in on any computer, only the A: drive is accessible while accessing the larger partition will return an error.
To go around this, click on the exe file again and enter your password that you’ve set earlier. If the password is correct, then the larger partition (which has all the data in your thumbs) will be available. If you entered the wrong password 6 times, the partition will be automatically formatted and then the space will be available, although without all the previous data in it.
Okay so how to make it work with your thumbdrive? Well if your thumbdrive has no A: partition on it then don’t worry. You just have to do an extra step once, which is copying the exe files to all the computers that will access the thumbdrive and then secure your device. For my case, I copied the USB Disk Pro to my office pc and house pc, so all I have to do is plug in my thumbdrive and double-click on the exe to enter my password. It will automatically recognize the thumb that is plugged in.
What if you need to access it on a computer that you haven’t copied the exe? If that PC has internet access, then just download the exe file. If the computer that has the exe file is nearby, then use that pc to remove the password from the device, copy the exe file and then secure it again on the new pc.
Done! Confused? Okay let me list out the steps for you below.
- Download the exe
- Save it somewhere easily accessible (like the desktop)
- Insert your thumbdrive
- Double-click on the exe
- Click on “Set Password”
- Complete form
Now your thumbdrive is automatically protected when it’s removed from the slot. When you or anyone else wants to access your thumbdrive on any pc, it will return an error.
To access your thumbdrive again, just double-click on the .exe and enter your password.
To access the thumbdrive on another pc, please make sure you have the .exe on that computer. You can do that by earlier copying it, using a different thumb to copy it, unsecure the thumb first or just download it off from the internet.
I like this, other than other solutions is that this will protect my whole thumbdrive, not just a few folders or files. Other encryption you have to select the files to encrypt.
Another thing, once you’ve secured your thumb, you don’t have to do it again. Whenever it’s plugged off, it’s already protected. So you don’t have to worry about forgetting to secure your thumb.
Easy – okay this “workaround” that I’m sharing here is what I’m using to secure my thumb, without referring to any manual or sites, I kinda figure this out by myself. If you decide to follow this tip then you will be responsible for your own actions. I am NOT liable for any damage to your device or your data.
Download the tool on pendrive’s website (look under Software, titled Security Password for the PenDrive). The zip file contains the manual (though it’s for those with the automated A: drive partition) that you can refer to understand the tool itself and of course, the exe file.