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IEEE 1667 ("Standard Protocol for Authentication in Host Attachments of Transient Storage Devices") is a standard published and maintained by the IEEE that describes various methods for authenticating transient storage devices such as USB flash drives when they are inserted into a computer.
Since the protocol is universal, it means that will be platform independent of operating system. Joel Otisk has a nice summary on CNET:
Here's the thing: We all have a plethora of flash drives, MP3 players, and USB disk drives. Yes, these may be a great way to replicate music or transport files, but they also create a huge security vulnerability. When you plug in the 250GB drive you bought at Fry's Electronics at lunch, you can steal a heck of a lot of data.
When IEEE 1667 is in place, the risks associated with this vulnerability decrease substantially because only authenticated devices will be accepted. I can provide my employees with specific types of IEEE 1667-compliant devices that can be authenticated and used. All others, including that device you bought at Fry's Electronics, won't work. Assuming that you can audit the use of these devices, this provides security without compromising usability--a win-win in the security management world.
- Rich, Donald (2007). "Authentication in Transient Storage Device Attachments". Computer (IEEE) 40 (4): 102–104. doi:10.1109/MC.2007.116. (subscription required (. ))
- Standards Working Group Website