Self-destructing thumb drives with smoke loads, glowing elements, tiny explosives

MG's Mr Self Destruct project takes the USB Killer to new levels, combining a $1.50 system-on-a-chip with a variety of payloads: smoke bombs, "sound grenades," and little explosives, cleverly choreographed with keystroke emulation, allowing the poisoned drive to first cause the connected computer to foreground a browser and load a web-page that plays an appropriate animation (a jack-in-the-box that plays "Pop Goes the Weasel" with the drive's explosive detonating for the climax).

The accompanying project log is full of hilariously, ominously damaged boards from failed prototypes, giving you a sense of exactly how wrong things can go when you plug a strange USB drive into your system. Expect lots of Hollywood threats and Youtuber pranks.

When presented as an exploding or smoke-emitting USB drive, there isn’t much in the way of practical use besides a tv/movie prop for a dramatic hacker scene. They sure do make for a good PoC video though! However, there are a lot of opportunities to adjust the physical payload. Example: If you used a battery powered “sound grenade” as the physical payload, you could retain the Pavlovian Awareness Training angle here that many Read Teams are immediately seeing. When plugged in, the keystroke injection does whatever you wish, then a loud siren would trigger that cannot be turned off until the battery dies. This is possible because the software controls a switch capable of handling as much power as your USB port can provide. So there are many small circuits that could be used here. If you can utilize a bigger package size, such as a 2.5" removable, then the options are even greater. This would work well for large battery powered devices. Example: a wifi attack device (cracking, jamming, etc) that only starts using its battery once it has been brought comfortably inside the physical target area.

Mr. Self Destruct [MG/Medium]