Do You Use Mobile Security for Your Android Devices?

Do You Use Mobile Security for Your Android Devices?I recall one episode of the TV sitcom Married with Children in which Al Bundy said that, at least when he was young, he didn’t have to wear a wetsuit for protection while having sex. Unfortunately, today we need that same kind of complete protection if we have any hope of keeping our identity safe and/or our computers free of infection. However, while keeping up with protection in these areas is often hard enough for the majority of us, it seems that there are those out there who enjoy causing havoc with our time and money. These individuals have apparently become bored with just hacking into the standard Windows programs and are now directing their malicious attacks toward our Android devices. It is interesting to note, though, that the iPad and iPhone, which use iOS, are virus-free and there is no protection needed (knock on wood).

Since I am quite attached to my Android devices, my journey to find the right protection at the right price (aka free) took me to A/V Test (by the Independent IT-Security Institute). On the site, I learned that the organization had recently completed testing over 40 different, advertised Android applications that supposedly offer security protection. However, out of the applications tested with A/V Test, only seven applications actually provided what I would consider ample protection — stopping 90% or more of infections.

Do You Use Mobile Security for Your Android Devices?For my own use I have installed a different security application for each of my Android-supported devices. On my Android smartphone I have installed Lookout Security & Antivirus, whereas on my Amazon Kindle Fire I have Dr. Web Anti-virus Light installed. Why don’t I use the same application on both devices? The answer is simple. I had already installed Lookout Security & Antivirus on my smartphone when I received my Amazon Kindle Fire. If it had been available on Amazon I would have installed the same application on the Kindle Fire, but when I went to purchase the application I found that the folks at Amazon were not offering Lookout Security & Antivirus. That forced me into looking for other alternatives, and I discovered that Amazon did have another highly rated security application called Dr. Web Anti-virus Light available.

Let me explain what each of these two fine applications have to offer you:

Lookout Security & Antivirus

  • The simplicity of this program makes it easy for the novice to use.
  • Setup is a breeze, but registration requires using a valid email address.
  • This application supports the backup of your other apps.
  • This application supports a feature designed to assist you in finding your phone if it is lost or stolen.
  • The Pro version adds safe browsing and privacy settings to the mix.

After setting up Lookout Security & Antivirus, the application will scan your phone and SD card (if you have one) for viruses. The application will then provide you with a report if any critters are found. After the initial scan, the application monitors your phone for any changes or updates to the system. This application is a gem in that it uses the minimal amount of resources, has a minimal effect on boot times, and, best of all, it is free.

Dr. Web Anti-virus Light

  • Downloads and installs directly from Amazon.
  • Easy to use.
  • Scans the Fire very quickly.
  • Updates are fast and immediate.
  • Has a quarantine area to secure bugs before deleting them from the system.
  • Light on system resources.

This is one of those applications that everyone loves. You download it, install it, and forget about it. Yes, it is that simple. What is impressive is how quickly the doc app scanned my system. If you have an Amazon Kindle Fire, this application is a must have and, again, one of its most attractive features is that it is free.

Comments welcome.

Partial chart from A/V Test document in .pdf format.

CC licensed Flickr photo above shared by Saad Irfan.

Article Written by

I have been writing for LockerGnome since relocating to Missouri seven years ago, where I continue to be a technology enthusiast who enjoys playing with the newest and latest gadgets.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1813155844 Antim Evtimov Batchev

    I think you should use security on everything you own! but do not over do it or you will be annoyed or you will not be able to do somethings! 

  • Matthew Cheung

    I don’t use Android but shared the article with my friends who do! Very interesting article :)

    • Ron_Schenone

      Thank you Matthew.

    • Ron_Schenone

      Thank you Matthew.

  • Joe Izzard

    I have a iPhone but my friends tell me that Android is better so this article will help when I come to decide. :)

    • Ron_Schenone

      Hello Joe, iOS vs Android is another one of those ‘hot button’ topics. I have used both and believe that either will serve you well. 

      • Joe Izzard

        Well I might stick with iOS as I have all ready bought some Apps on it.

  • Don

    Been using the Lookout (Pro ver) for almost a year now and it does an excellent job.  Smart phones are mini pcs, so the same safeguards SHOULD be followed.  Unfortunately, many don’t understand the principle and think it’s “just a phone that does extra stuff”.  I do wish there was an app that could clear my cache like on my pc.  Doing an app by app cleansing is a real pain.  Something like CC Cleaner would be great!  Anyone know of something like this?
     

    • Jeff Evans

      1Tap Cleaner Free seems to do a reasonable cache cleaning job

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000445897520 Muhamed Heljić

    To be honest, no. At one time or another, I had some antivirus app which worked well but failed to see the point at that time. I’m going to give it another try to see what it can detect from average use.

  • John Barlow

    iOS is secure for the same reason it sucks, from a geek standpoint.  You have limited access to the operating system/core files/kernel.

  • http://twitter.com/rvandersyde Rhys Vandersyde

    I’ve just switched from the Bitdefender product over to Kaspersky. I like some of its additional security features including remotely wiping and locating lost devices.

  • Pingback: New Video! – What Are the Top Android Device Security Options? « Geeky Bits

  • Jmartinoni

    I’ve been very happy with Lookout on my Android smartphone for several years, and since I’ve just ordered a Kindle Fire, your heads-up on Dr. Web is very timely. Thanks, and congratulations on your marriage!

  • Brad Tomlinson

    I use Lookout on my smartphone as well.

  • Jonathan Wakeman

    I did not know how susceptible android devisees are I will be downloading and installing the antivirus software immediately.

  • Nicodeimous

    Ios is targetable, theres just no interest atm as hey are only 25 percent or so of active smartphones. Same issue between windows and osx. Also the very closed nature of apples business model may make it harder to get useful activity going.

    Personally been using androind since the g1 and have yet to encounter a virus inthe wild, last i checked there theory atm. Information theft over wifi etc can happen to any unsecured connection reguardless of os.