Worms and viruses…via the postal service?

I received an e-mail message stating some products were being sent to me that I had inquired about.  When the package arrived, I noticed it had been sent from Hong Kong.  Interesting…

What arrived was a “USB Flash Drive with Voice Recording”, and “USB 2-in-1 Web Cam”.

Let’s begin with my experience with the web cam.

USB 2-in-1 Web Cam, Product Code: UWCAM003200

The packaging identifies it as a Minocam High Speed Web Cam.  A web cam, flash memory storage device, and…well, I have no idea what the third definitive function is.  I was the “2G” version, that has 2 gigabytes worth of storage.

There were many problems.

The USB Type A plug slides in and out of the device.  The piece on the side of the web cam, that is used to slide the plug in and out, broke off.

Software for it was provided on a Mini CD.  My computer from Alienware was not able to read it.  (I recommend NEVER using Mini CDs:  they don’t work in all devices.)

I connected the web cam to my computer, and Microsoft Windows Vista had compatible drivers for it.  The camera worked…but, the image rendered was as if the lens element had been knocked sideways about 45 degrees.  I attempted to adjust the lens, to turn it to see if I could straighten the image, and the lens came off and out of the camera.  I was able to see inside of the device.  It seems as if a mirror that reflects, or an element that captures, is misaligned.

Software was on the flash drive.  I copied it to a folder on my hard drive, and warnings appeared from Microsoft Security Essentials.

Category: Worm
Description: This program is dangerous and self-propagates over a network connection.

Category: Virus
Description: This program is dangerous and replicates by infecting other files.

Category: Backdoor
Description: This program provides remote access to the computer it is installed on.

Category: Worm
Description: This program is dangerous and self-propagates over a network connection.

After a search via the internet that, I found reports of others that had used the software…and then had problems with Windows Explorer.  I did not install the software.

I’ve read about horror stories of devices having malware on them (Seagate had shipped infected drives), as well as embedded in them (digital picture frames sold by Best Buy and Sams Club)…and those are just the two I can remember and mention this moment.  I never thought I would have a similar experience.  Especially when what I received did not come via a retail channel.

I don’t know who to blame:
the manufacturer…
the promotional agency…
the distributor…
or the Chinese postal service.

The packaging for the web cam was not “secure”…it could have been opened.


The best item of the two is the “USB Flash Drive with Voice Recording“, which I do recommend.

From their website:
“This USB flash drive is not only data storage, but also a voice recorder. You can records any sound into the memory with WAV format. Built-in a rechargeable battery, let you has 5 hours continuous recording…”

Price:  US$23.00

2GB (1GB ~ 70 hours recording)
Built-in voice recording On/Off switch
LED indicator
Support Window 7 / Vista / XP, Linux 2.4, Mac OS X or latest version
Colors:  Blue, Black

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