What Is Juice Jacking

Source: General / General

Summer will be here before we know it, which means millions of Americans are getting their travel plans together.

But according to a warning from the FBI, it’s better to arrive at your local airport with your phone fully charged along with a backup battery, as tech-savvy thieves are using phone charging stations to hack mobile devices.

In a tweet posted by FBI Denver, the organization wrote to its users, “Avoid using free charging stations in airports, hotels or shopping centers. Bad actors have figured out ways to use public USB ports to introduce malware and monitoring software onto devices. Carry your own charger and USB cord and use an electrical outlet instead.”


“Juice jacking” is a scam that involves putting malware or monitoring software into a public USB port. That gives scammers the ability to steal data off a phone when it plugs in. It could include passwords, addresses and banking information. Victims could even have their phones locked through the software.

 The Federal Communications Commission also issued a warning on its website about “juice jacking” and listed some basic tips to help you avoid being a victim.

  • Avoid using a public USB charging station. Use an AC power outlet instead.
  • Bring AC, car chargers and your own USB cables with you when traveling.
  • Carry a portable charger or external battery.
  • Consider carrying a charging-only cable, which prevents data from sending or receiving while charging, from a trusted supplier.
  • If you plug your device into a USB port and a prompt appears asking you to select “share data” or “charge only,” always select “charge only.”
  • Public Wi-Fi networks are another way that cybercriminals target travelers. To learn more about mobile phone and online security, check out the FCC consumer guide: Wireless Connections and Bluetooth Security Tips

As technology gets better, so do the criminals who use it to scam innocent people. Make sure when you plan your vacations this summer, you also take precautions to make sure your phone and information are safe.


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What Is Juice Jacking? FBI Warns Travelers To Beware Of New Scam  was originally published on