May 10, 2013

4 Tips for Complete Android Smartphone Protection

With the rising popularity of Android Smartphones, there have been increased attacks in the form of mobile malware, in particular Android malware. A recent survey tells us that more than 35,000 different viruses and other threats were found in past one year and the number is increasing daily. Almost 5 million users have been affected by mobile malware in one year. So, it is time not to make a queue outside mobile stores to buy a new Smartphone, rather feel responsible in protecting our mobiles from viruses and malware.

The reason behind the rising popularity is the Android’s flexibility (open-source) in taking any form, either it is for good or bad. The Google’s operating system has taken two-thirds of the world’s Smartphone market (Stats don’t lie), even one or two new mobiles are released every day with brand latest features.

What Must Be Done?

The first thing that every security expert would suggest mobile users is to protect their devices with an “ANTIVIRUS”. Yes, this is basic but essential in securing our mobile apps and data. There are plenty of security vendors who are competing in ‘Antivirus’ section, releasing security apps of reasonable price and even some are free to download and use.

Definitely, the paid versions have more advanced features and capabilities. But, are all security apps real? No. We could find a huge number of apps labeled “Antivirus”, “Security” and “Defender” in Google’s Play Store. It is best to choose the security apps offered by brand manufacturers who have already been well-accepted by many users. Download the best one and run the virus scanner to remove malicious threats.

Virus Protection different for Mobiles!

We use various kinds of antivirus software in PC to find and remove the latest viruses and other threats. But, do you know that mobile protection is different from PC? There is more than removing malware or other viruses on your mobile devices – Data Protection. The main intention of any malware or virus is to gain access to your device and steal your personal information without your involvement.

Presently, the best security apps at virus detection are F-Secure and TrustGo. Both have their own features and capabilities in detecting malware, removing them and protecting your valuable data. They have a strong virus database which includes the list of latest virus signatures. The virus scanners solely depend on these signatures stored on the device.

There are some other strong contenders for malware detection other than F-Secure and TrustGo such as Avast!, BitDefender, Trend Micro, etc. which are free to download and use.

Beware of Slow Performance:

Does a virus scanner slow down your device? The security app which is installed on your device eats away more system resources than required. The CPU capacity holds more memory in the background and battery load will weaken the system performance. Those apps may be strong but no user will appreciate slow OS on their mobile devices. So, take performance issue into account when installing any security app.

Risky Fake Apps

The other apps like games, personalization, utility, etc. needs to be installed with extra care. Because, most the trusted apps from popular brands does not require permissions to access the user’s device data. But, the so called Fake apps are currently requesting you to include many authorizations such as permissions to access user’s address book, the internet connection, text messages, and many more. This is very risky and difficult to handle in future.

Look for F-Secure and Trend Micro apps, which can show you the risky permissions granted and block them right away using their audit feature. The Lookout Mobile Security and BitDefender also do some decent work in blocking fake apps. Some security apps need to be downloaded from their official websites only but, not from Google Play Store.

Currently, the best security app available now in the market which is free and can be downloaded from Google Play Store is Lookout Mobile Security. It gives you complete control of everything. When scanning your device, it is recommended to connect the internet as some security apps are cloud-based services, i.e. they download the latest virus signatures from the web and then runs the application.

Please, provide your valuable suggestions in the comment box regarding this post.
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