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Protect USB Flash Drive from Viruses and Other Users' Unwanted Access

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Plugging your USB flash drive into a system increases the threat of intrusion by viruses, and many will suggest antivirus software to protect against this, though it would need to be run frequently on the drive. Frequently formatting storage media causes aging; in other words its life decreases and eventually the media gets corrupt and remains of no use. A better option is to deploy security, with checks that only the administrator can access the flash drive and so decreasing the chances of virus threats.

At times you might be storing some confidential and/ or personal data in flash drive, which you don’t want others to access. In such a case, applying security checks will help them to keep their flash drive and data secured. Only limited accounts will have the authority to use the drive and the data will not be accessed by unwanted users.

It is a simple task to deploy security; but before applying security, one must format the usb flash drive using NTFS file system.

Steps to format using NTFS:

  1. Log on to Windows with administrator account.
  2. Right-click the storage media drive that is to be formatted.

  3. From the context menu, click the Format option.

  4. On the displayed dialog box, from the File System drop-down list, select the NTFS option.
  5. On the displayed warning message, click OK to provide the consent.

  6. Wait till the media gets formatted.
  7. Once done, click OK to continue.

  8. Close the opened dialog box.

  9. Your pen drive now uses NTFS file system.


  • After formatting your usb flash drive using NTFS, you can now apply permission to it.

    Steps for applying permission:

    1. Right-click on the storage media drive and click Properties.

    2. On the properties box, go to the Security tab.

    3. Click the Edit button.

    4. On the dialog box, click to select the user from the list.
    5. Once selected, check the desired checkboxes from the list below to set permissions for the user on the media.

    6. You can also add any other user by clicking Add button.
    7. You can also add or remove user accounts to add or remove permission on a user or group by click Add or Remove buttons respectively.
    8. Click OK on all the opened boxes and windows when done.


  • Your usb flash drive is now secured. Before giving access, the drive will ask for valid authentication.
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