We are quite cautious at protecting the data on our phones and laptops. Be it using a simple VPN service when browsing the internet or changing our master passwords regularly, among many other methods. But what about when you leave your phone to charge at a public space such as your favorite coffee shop or the charging kiosk at an airport? Yes, juice jacking is real and hackers can infect your phone with malicious software through your phone’s USB port. Scary, I must say. But thankfully devices like USB data blockers prevent that from happening.
The idea behind a USB data blocker is simple. These products block the data pins on the USB port of your charging cable. That way, it eliminates the chance of data flowing from your phone. In short, it acts as a firewall between your phone and the (public) USB port.
The good thing is that most USB data blockers are tiny and fit easily into purse and wallet. You simply have to connect this device your phone’s USB Type-A end, and that’s about it. Someone rightly called it the USB condom. No, I am not joking.
So, if you have been searching for quality USB data blockers for your phone, here are some of the best ones out there.
1. PORTAPOW 3RD GEN USB DATA BLOCKER
The PortaPow 3rd Gen USB Data Blocker can supply power up to 2.4 Amps of power. Quite obviously, there are quite a few happy users. Out of some twelve hundred reviews, it has raked an impressive rating of 4.7-stars out of 5 on Amazon.
Quite naturally with such a device, you won’t get the same charging speed on your smartphone as you normally do, since the device supports only 2.4A charging. If you are looking for a USB-C data blocker, luckily that’s also available. The features are the same except in this case, you get the modern USB Type-C head instead of the USB-A head.
2. PORTAPOW PURE USB DATA BLOCKER
The good news is that the transparent design doesn’t make it any less durable. As one user observes, “I accidentally left this in my pants pocket and it went through the washer and the dryer (admittedly, on low heat) and it still works exactly as it’s supposed to.” Impressive, I must say.
You can also check out PortaPow’s cable that comes with a built-in data blocker. It’s 3.3ft long and has a standard USB-C port at the end.
3. PLUGABLE USB-MC1
Plugable’s USB-MC1 has received a fair amount of praise from its users, with 71% giving it a 5-star rating. The common understanding is that it works just as advertised.
The only limitation is that the device can draw a maximum power of 1A. So, even if you plug into a port that is capable of delivering power at 2.1A, it will still simulate a 1A current and charge your device at a slow rate.
4. USB DEFENDER DATA BLOCKER
At the same time, the device is durable and will last you for a long time. It does its job as claimed.
The customer reception of the product has been good so far and has amassed around 4.7-stars out of 5 on Amazon. A user explains this product simply as, “Feedback was yes, the devices did do what they were advertised to do. Are there better ones out there? Maybe, but this work and you can’t beat the price.”
5. ET USB DATA BLOCKER FOR CELL PHONE
It supports fast charging. So far, this unit has attracted a fair amount of reviews. However, the width of the product is a little unwieldy, and may prevent you from using the adjacent USB ports on computers and laptops.
Though USB data blockers are a great way to prevent theft of data and other information from your phone, the best option is to carry a power bank (see things to check before buying a power bank) with you whenever you travel. That way you won’t have to queue for your turn in a charging station. And well, it’s safe and the portability is the cherry on top.
Just keep in mind to invest in a fast charger to avoid carrying a brick-like power bank as you meander through airport traffic.