Wait, you can buy USB Rootkits in SkyMall?

The hell? Who knew SkyMall sold USB rootkits? From the ad copy:
stealthbot.jpg "Easy To Use & Undetectable Total Computer Spying Tool Covertly Monitors Passwords, Chatting, Photos, Websites & More!

Insert In USB, And In 5 Seconds Data Nano iBots Monitor All Computer Activity On ALL USER ACCOUNTS w/o Tell-Tale Hardware Left Behind.

Covertly Record Everything A Person Does On A Computer. Remove Stealth iBot After 5 Seconds: No Hardware Left Behind. Undetectable By Most Anti-Spyware Applications. Store Up to 10,000 Screenshots & Virtually Unlimited Text. Total Surveillance - Record All Computer Activity - Even On Other User Accounts.

Stealthbot (skymall.com, via Quinn Norton)


    1. Presumably using it on someone else’s computer is what’s illegal. There’ve been many past attempts to criminalize “hacker tools”, often including compilers, standard diagnostic tools, excessively flexible web browsers, etc.

  1. **Legal Disclaimer: Buyers must cross their heart and hope to die, stick a needle in their eye, that they will only deploy on a computer they own.

  2. Gotta love the legal disclaimer, because you would sooooo need to have this thing suck its screen shots and keylogs in 5 seconds (from the product description) if you **owned** the computer.

    Oh, and you could soooo totally trust it not to open a backdoor own your “other” computer when you mount it to check out the screen shots and keylogs.

  3. So it installs a keylogger and a screencap tool. It’s fairly easy to make something like this using freely available software and information about autorun.inf files. Actually, you could do this one better by also capturing log files, index.dat files, the contents of the Recycle Bin, MRU lists, etc.

    This is why I disable autorun on my USB ports and CD/DVD drives. I know my friends well enough not to trust the bastards.

    1. No, dude, you don’t understand.

      It has Data Nano iBots, your puny technology is no match for this Undetectable Total Computer Spying Tool.

      It’s NANO, get it, NANO. You haven’t got a chance!!!

  4. Do the nano iBots actually swarm into the machine from the USB stick? That’s pretty amazing! Millions of minuscule robots invading your ex’s computer, squatting in every file, perched on top of her monitor looking down at the keyboard while she types!

  5. The part I find funniest about this is that the thumb drive in the picture is a model available in bulk with a custom logo from pretty much any promotional tchotchke company for about $8 each. They load on some software they found on the internet and sell them for $150. That’s a pretty good profit.

  6. For only $100, I will sell you my superior version that uses PICO-Bots!

    Currently developing a Femto-Bot based version – MSRP TBD.

    1. nano is superior to pico, as pico was released under a non-Free license and is no longer under active development.

      femto cannot even be considered as a replacement for nano, as it isn’t even an editor.

  7. I saw a Sandra Bullock movie where they explained how Data Nano iBots Monitor All Computer Activity but this was like 15 years ago so they weren’t very nano actual people had to go into the computer to pwn it. True story.

    As if Speed weren’t awful enough. I hope they announce she won the Oscar next week and then cackle, “just kidding!! HAHAHAHAH!”

    Or maybe they already did . She’s not listed on the official Oscar site.


  8. “When Ready, Re-Insert Into USB to Retrieve Everything”

    Wonder how long that takes. Regardless, very happy to be using Macs.

  9. This device is seriously not a rootkit, not even close. Rootkits install themselves at ring 0 as an LKM / kernel module or a driver.

  10. [Bullock is] not listed on the official Oscar site.

    OK, as I write this, she’s listed, and Helen Mirren is missing. Nice site, ABC.

  11. “Stores Virtually Infinite Amount Of Text”

    or 1 GB, whichever come first.
    (Granted, 1 GB is a LOT of ASCII text.)

  12. ** Must be logged into computer with installation rights prior to inserting device ** – great, so just buy a CD , download a root kit or anything else that saves you the 140 bucks for the usb sticks

  13. Xeni, one of your co-bloggers wrote a book called Little Brother, and if you read it or are even familiar with the premise, you can probably guess the justification for this sort of thing: This One’s For The Children, of course. Not that that’s what a lot of these clowns would actually use this for (snooping on significant others and employees), and not that a reasonably smart kid wouldn’t take precautions against the “iBot”, but that’s nothing new.

  14. I know someone who’s ex installed this exact thing on her computer. Can anyone recommend a way to remove it and guard against re-installation? Some links would be very handy.

    And yes, I’ve already recommended Linux. She’s not interested.

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