We at Android Police take our mobile security pretty seriously. It's in the job description. Entering the realm of mobile security today is yet another contender on the good side of the battle: VirusTotal has released its client for Android. Prior to this, VirusTotal was a simple website where you can upload suspicious files to be scanned by a multitude of antivirus engines. Having provided this desktop OS-oriented service for several years now, VirusTotal has brought its experience and expertise to mobile.
The Google Play Store's "Bouncer," which Google launched back in February to protect Android users from malicious apps, is a service that scans potential Play Store apps by running them in a virtual phone environment, where the app's activities are monitored for any signs of mal-intent.
Taking advantage of that test period, security researchers Charlie Miller and Jon Oberheide have evidently found ways past Bouncer (which they will be presenting at the Summercon conference in New York this week).
Who uses WhatsApp Messenger? From The look of the Play Store listing, a damn lot of people. Considering it's so popular, it's probably a pretty secure app, right? Think again.
WhatsApp actually sends all chats in plaintext, so anyone on the same Wi-Fi network can easily pull your entire conversation - including pictures and videos - straight out of the air. And now, that process is even easier than ever thanks to a new app called WhatsAppSniffer.
While not everyone who owns an Android device roots, the Android modding community is at the very heart of everything we love about our little green buddy. Security researcher Dan Rosenberg recently gave a presentation where he elaborates on root and modding methods, as well as expounding on the security implications of modding Android phones.
Rosenberg also had quite a lot to say about how carriers influence the Android landscape.
Google Authenticator, an important security tool that enables 2-step verification for your Google account, has racked up over 250,000 downloads over its lifetime, which is no small feat for any app in the Play Store. However, a few days ago, that version (previously available here) all of a sudden became obsolete and was consequently silently deleted.
Its replacement, which can be found here, bears version 2 (2.15 to be exact) and offers the following changelog:
A flurry of cloud storage apps have hit the Play Store in recent days, with COMODO Security Solutions, Bitdefender, and Genie9 all releasing official cloud solutions. Each of the new apps puts its own twist on cloud storage, offering slightly different features, so it's worth looking at each individually.
Comodo Security Solutions, a respected purveyor of desktop (and Android) security solutions, released COMODO Cloud to the Play Store just a couple of days ago, bringing a practical, thoughtful solution to those seeking an easy cloud syncing option.
The Kyocera Milano - a mid-range phone released on Sprint last September - is receiving an OTA update, bringing the device's software up to version 1.006sp. The update includes several bug fixes, as well as a security patch, "changes" to the phone's roaming guard display, and Mobile Alert System capability. If the update hasn't pushed to your Milano just yet, you can manually check by hitting Settings > About Phone > System Update > Update Firmware.
Avira, a "worldwide leading supplier of self-developed security solutions," has thrown its hat into the Android security ring, releasing Avira Free Android Security to the Market today. The app offers a bevy of familiar anti-theft functions, including remote lock, scream, GPS tracking, and device info monitoring, among others.
Though Avira's solution offers the old standbys as far as anti-theft functionality, the app also has a few unique touches and key features that make it worth checking out.
A few months ago, Liam spent some time with 17 mobile security apps, one of which was an app called Cerberus. He came away quite impressed - so impressed, in fact, that he crowned it the winner (and, as a license is just $4, it was also crowned the best for the budget-minded).
The app is always free to download and comes with a 1 week free trial, but a lifetime license is normally $4.
I'll admit it, I'm anal about CPU and RAM usage. I'm the kind of person that goes into MSConfig every 6 months to scrape useless startup processes like barnacles off the hull of a ship to keep boot times down and squeeze every last possible increment of free RAM and CPU that I can (insert "Then you should use Linux" joke here) out of my system. If you're like me, then you probably avoid heavy, suite-ized security solutions like the bubonic plague crossed with bird flu.