USB-C might become much more secure in the future

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January 4, 2019
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With the huge majority of new Android devices supporting USB Sort-C expertise and USB Type-C ports showing up on lots of other new devices, there’s a great chance that you have already got quite a few items of technology with Type-C ports.

The USB Implementer’s Forum, USB-IF president, Jeff Ravencraft believes USB Type-C is “the single cable of the future”. If the connection protocol does, in fact, become the “one cable to rule them all,” there is a need to have as many security systems as possible to prevent nefarious devices from abusing the universality of cables and ports.

Therefore, USB-IF is rolling out its USB Type-C Authentication Program, which hopefully will help make Type-C systems more secure in the future. The purpose of the program is to create a secure handshake between different USB Type-C devices.

The program defines the optimal cryptographic-based authentication for USB Type-C devices and chargers. Any host system using this protocol will be able to confirm the authenticity of a device or charger, including descriptors and capabilities, right at the moment, a connection is made.

For instance, you are at the airport and want to charge your phone at one of those charging kiosks. However, you’re concerned about the security of that charging terminal. With the authentication program in place, you won’t have to worry, as your phone will only approve connection from certified chargers.

Currently, the authentication program is going to be optional but in the future, the program could be made mandatory, which will help all USB Type-C devices become more secure.

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