+ 1 Votes Might try "USB WriteProtector" wizard57m-cnet Moderator April 28, 2013 at 3:16pm PST it's a small utility to add and remove write protection to USB thumb drives, here's one download link, there are probably others http://www.softpedia.com/get/Security/Security-Related/USB-Write-Protect.shtml + 0 Votes Reponse To Answer TerriAlley April 30, 2013 at 10:18pm PST And this is where I'm leaning. Some of the members in our organization are Flintstone-era tech-minded, so one of my concerns is them accidentially deleting the contents. I also have a concern that our branded drive could be used by their grandkids, passed around and eventually contain porn or malware that we wouldn't want associated with our name. We don't have a separate website - use a page hosted at our national site, which doesn't have the capacity to host downloads for members. I'm working with a company that has branded 64MB drive, so we'll just try to fill them up! Thanks for the help/suggestions. + 1 Votes Not possible as flash drives are not designed for security. Adrian Watts April 29, 2013 at 1:15am PST How much data are you talking about? Physically some flash drives have a write protect switch, but unless you are planning to spend the time to set the switch to write only then break the switch... From the software side fat16/32 has no security in it, you can set a file to read-only to prevent accidental deletion but it is just as trivial to remove it. If you format it to ntfs you can modify permissions so that All Users has only read access, but all a user has to do is Take Ownership and they have full access again. And if set to ntfs the users have to remember to eject the drive, and how many do you think will remember. And then you have to consider mac (or linux) users. NB: and software solutions like above would require you to have access to install it on their personal computers. The easiest option is to provide them with cd-roms since by definition they are WORMs (Write Once Read Many), unless you are concerned about lack of cd-rom drives. The only potential option would be to find a way to create a read-only "partition" on the usb drive. The only two ways i can think of are either creating a type of volume like truecrypt does (although truecrypt is unsuitable) which can be opened with a bit of software but configured as read only without a password. Which adds a layer of complexity for the user. The last option is to create a cdfs partitition (virtual cd-rom) which would appear as a regular cd-rom when the usb drive is plugged in. Have a look at http://www.rmprepusb.com/tutorials/97---write-protect-or-make-a-cd-dvd-partition-on-a-flash-drive. This gets complicated very quickly as you have to match the software to the micro-controller on the usb drive. U3 flash drives used to do something like this. Have you considered just hosting the files on a web-site or a cyptlocker site or does this not match your marketing requirements. + 0 Votes Not really security but protection. AnonyJew April 29, 2013 at 3:06am PST I would suggest ThumbScrew. It doesn't really make the thumb drive secure because it doesn't encrypt anything, but it is a great little tool for making a thumb drive read only. I use this all the time when doing system recovery and troubleshooting on systems that might have viruses. One thing to keep in mind thumb screw automatically undoes itself when you plug the thumb drive into the computer you used to screw it. http://www.irongeek.com/i.php?page=security/thumbscrew-software-usb-write-blocker + 1 Votes Won't work dmritchie2 April 29, 2013 at 5:58am PST Both of the suggestions are only workable on the particular machine that put the write-protection on them. (they flip a bit in that machine's registry). I find it interesting that the only correct answer is down-modded. I expect that this will be also. + 0 Votes You can broke it, but no real protection Krotow April 29, 2013 at 6:09pm PST Here is no real read-only mode for standard flash drives today. You can try to screw up file system, trying to mimick CD file system, written above. But it is not a solution, because flash drive can be reformatted later by any, who has some basic technical IT skills. All changes, done by low-level tools from manufacturer, also is reversable. Only if you want to solder read-only switch into fixed position - but 99% today's flash drives has no read-only pin Of course, there is "secure" flask sticks, such as those http://www.samlogic.net/articles/usb-flash-drive-security-protect-contents.htm but i seriously doubt, if they fit into your demo drive budget. My recommendation - don't worry about the inevitable. Your demo content definitely isn't a world's classics whoch should remain for centuries. It will be obsolete sooner and later and better then those drives can be used for something more useful. + 0 Votes If you really want to use flash drives and the data to go on them is small. Adrian Watts April 29, 2013 at 11:28pm PST Then consider branded flash drives in the smallest capacity available (currently 256mb i believe), the smaller the better. The more piddly the capacity the less likely the people are to reformat them (they'll just throw them away instead.) If they keep them around at least they will have your company name on them. This is the reality of usb flash drives. Don't forget the expense/time required to copy the data onto them, some custom flash drive companies will pre-load the content for you along with the branding.