Updates to this story
Camera manufacturer Olympus has joined the list of the red faced after it shipped around 2,000 cameras with an infected microSD card. It has apologised for the error.
The camera in question is the Stylus Tough 6010, which was released in July of last year. Currently only a single batch of the devices has been found to have infected microSD cards.
The infection is a worm that employs the autorun feature on Windows to automatically install itself and spread to other devices.
Samsung made a similar gaffe last week when it shipped a batch of its S8500 Wave phones with infected microSD cards, although the problem was limited to Germany. IBM also messed up recently by giving infected USB drives to journalists in Australia. Indeed, it seems to be becoming such a trend that technology firms may need to pay better attention to what they're sending their customers.
Graham Cluley, Senior Technology Consultant at Sophos, told TechEye that quality control is most likely to blame.
“Technology firms may not be putting enough processes in place to ensure that the 'image' they put on a device's internal memory or SD card does not also contain malware,” he told us. “In which case we would expect to see it on every device.”
He said that the infection may also have occurred on the production line. “You can easily imagine a scenario where devices roll down the conveyor belt and testers are required to pick up the device, plug it into a computer to ensure it works and then put it back on the conveyor belt.”
Olympus has advised its customers to check its website to see if their camera is one of the 2,000 infected.
For those who have bought a Stylus Tough 6010 it is advised that you disabled the autorun feature on your computer and do a virus scan of the card before employing it. Since it is dependent on the autorun it cannot spread if you have disabled it.
“If more care was taken to ensure that all computers were running up-to-date security software, and that the PCs used for QC could not be easily tampered with by malware, then the chances of such infections would dramatically reduce,” Cluley said.