Have you ever heard of "juice jacking"? If you haven't, it's something you need to keep in mind when doing you're shopping in the mall or traveling during the holidays.

According to snopes.com, here's the official definition of "Juice Jacking":

The practice of stealing information from or installing malware on phones while they are plugged into publicly accessible USB ports.

Now that you know what "juice jacking" is, there has been a public warning issued for people holiday shopping at malls or traveling through airports that they should avoid charging their phones on public USB charging stations.

In this highly technical world, cyber thieves will stop at nothing to get your personal information. Now we have another cyber threat that poses serious risks to smartphones, tablets and computers. In as little as one minute, a virus can be transferred to unsuspecting users’ devices. Then, the virus begins exporting sensitive data and passwords directly to the scammers.

Now while this practice is technically possible for hackers to install malware on public USB ports, fortunately for most of us, this practice doesn't appear to be widespread, but since there is the possibility, here's some tips from the L.A. County District Attorneys Office to avoid having your information stolen:

    • You should use an AC power outlet, not a direct USB charging station.
    • Bring along AC and car chargers for your devices when traveling.
    • Pick up a portable charger and use that to charge your device or for emergencies.

Here's a video to explain why you should be cautious of possible "Juice Jacking":

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