While USB drives are one of the most useful devices when it comes to data exchange, they are also a pain in terms of spreading viruses and data theft. This is especially problematic in college or office labs, where students or workers frequently exchange thumb-drives and use them on unprotected systems. One infected drive and the administrator has to spend hours of maintenance work on all networked PCs.
While it may not be possible to control the users’ behavior, it is very easy to control how your PC behaves. PenyuUSB is free software that allows you to disable or enable USB mass storage controller, hence preventing the drive from accessing the PC altogether.
While this solution may not appeal to some users, you can always enable the USB function back, which can be password protected. The administrator can then share the password with authorized users. Using PenyuUSB, you can also prevent data theft.
While very useful, this tool comes with a little bit of complication. Despite being free, it requires registration top activate the program. When unregistered, you have an ‘Enter Activation Code’ button available at the bottom of the screen. Clicking it will bring forth a dialog box where the unique registration number for your PC can be found.
Enter the required info and click the Send Online button. It will be received by the software’s developers, who will send you back your activation code. Also note that you will need to disable Windows User Account Control (UAC) in order to use this utility. Probably quite a serious drawback for some users.
Aside from this minor inconvenience, PenyuUSB can be really helpful in protecting your PC and data by safeguarding your system’s USB ports. It has been tested with Windows 7 32-bit and works well.