Editors' Choice

This USB Device Will Fry Your Computer

Steve Porter / December 5, 2016

It’s called the USB Killer and this little device is designed to test the surge protection of USB ports on electronic devices. The design of this little device is fairly simple, it’s made up of five capacitors that will charge up very quickly when plugged into a powered USB device, and when they’re full, all that stored up energy is released (200 volts DC) back into the electronic the USB device is plugged into.

 

This is not for fun. This is not to prank your friends because if you plug it into something with an unprotected USB port, you may end up with a dead device.

 

usb-killer-1

That’s a fried computer right there.
Source: youtube (Austin Evans)

 

In the video above, YouTuber Austin Evans tests out the USB Killer on an ASUS Chromebook first. You instantly see how fast the USB Killer can fry a device. It literally fried the internal components right after he plugged it into the USB port. Austin then tests the protection of the 2016 MacBook Pro. It required an adapter, and at first nothing happened, but then as the USB Killer releases its charge, you can hear some tiny clicks. It was then discovered that the port was still able to charge the MacBook, but it was unable to receive data.

 

So, how does the USB Killer perform against a Smart TV? Well, it didn’t cause the TV to stop functioning, but it did kill the USB port. Next up, a Nexus 6P smartphone. With this device, Austin hears one of the loudest electric discharges from the USB Killer of the day. Initially, I thought the phone was fried, but as it turns out, the phone just rebooted. Much like the MacBook Pro, the port can receive power, but it won’t handle data anymore.

 

usb-killer-2

Source: usbkill

 

If you’re worried about people plugging this into your USB devices, there are these USB port blockers available to physically prevent USB devices from plugging into those ports.

 

Another YouTuber, EverythingApplePro, tested the same USB Killer on the PS4 Pro, Xbox One S, and the Apple TV. Check it out to see if your gaming consoles are safe!

 

 

Featured image via youtube (Austin Evans)