FTDI intentionally brick USB devices that use a counterfeit chip

vbimport

#1

The company FTDI makes a chip that is commonly used in USB devices that require USB to serial conversion, particularly in hobby circuit boards.

With the amount of counterfeit chips on the market, FTDI decided to fight back by releasing a driver through Windows update that when installed, it detects whether the USB device is using a counterfeit FTDI chip and if so, it reprogrammes the firmware to brick it.

Apparently this has caused chaos, particularly with electronics hobbyists as well as end users who happen to have a USB device with a counterfeit FTDI chip, such as certain USB to serial adapters.

The following is a rant video on EEVblog:

//youtu.be/eU66as4Bbds


#2

Did anyone really need another reason to avoid letting Windoz Update mess with drivers? Its not even automatic, you have to give it permission to do that.


#3

Microsoft should kick them permanently out of WHQL for behaviour like that