He is working with electronic manufacturing company from where he ordered some circuit boards from China for creating his own USB killer stick.
“When we connect it up to the USB port, an inverting DC/DC converter runs and charges capacitors to -110V,” the researcher explained. “When the voltage is reached, the DC/DC is switched off. At the same time, the field transistor opens.“
At last, he successfully developed a well functioning USB killer pendrive which is able to effectively destroy sensitive components of a computer when plugged-in.
“It is used to apply the -110V to signal lines of the USB interface. When the voltage on capacitors increases to -7V, the transistor closes and the DC/DC starts. The loop runs till everything possible is broken down. Those familiar with the electronics have already guessed why we use negative voltage here.“
It is not possible for hardware to prevent all damage to physical systems in some scenarios. It may be possible for an attacker to exploit SCADA vulnerabilities and remove safety controls used by power plants or put it into an unstable state.
Stuxnet worm is one of the real example of such cyber attacks, which was designed to destroy centrifuges at the Nuclear facility and all this started from a USB drive.
Also in 2014, a security firm demonstrated an attack on Apple’s Mac computer by overriding temperature controls, which can actually set the machine on fire.
So if we say that a computer could be converted into a bomb, then of course it’s true, a hacker can probably make your computer explode as well.