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Mobile Security Review 2013 - AV
Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
www.av-comparatives.org
AV-Comparatives
Mobile Security Review
Language: English
August 2013
Last revision: 20th August 2013
www.av-comparatives.org
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Contents
Introduction ........................................... 3
Overview................................................. 6
Tested products ....................................... 8
Battery usage .......................................... 9
Detection of Android malware ................ 11
AVC UnDroid Analyser ............................ 11
AhnLab V3 Mobile ................................. 13
avast! Mobile Security ........................... 16
Bitdefender Mobile Security Premium ..... 20
ESET Mobile Security .............................. 23
F-Secure Mobile Security ........................ 26
IKARUS mobile.security ......................... 29
Kaspersky Mobile Security...................... 32
Lookout PREMIUM ................................. 35
Quick Heal Total Security ....................... 38
Sophos Security and Antivirus ................ 41
Trend Micro Mobile Security ................... 45
Webroot SecureAnywhere ....................... 48
Conclusion ............................................ 51
Appendix – Featurelist........................... 52
Copyright and Disclaimer ....................... 53
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Introduction
Smartphones represent the future of mobile telephony. In April 2013 they exceeded 55% of the
mobile phone market1, and will surely replace conventional mobile phones sooner or later. For many
people, such devices are much more than just telephones. They can be used for Internet banking,
Facebook, taking and storing photos, organising one’s entire life. This brings some risks; the same
features that benefit the user make the devices attractive to criminals. Smartphones can be infected
with malicious software, and sensitive data can be stolen. Phishing attacks work just as effectively
with smartphones as with any other device.
Using a desktop or laptop PC without security software has become unthinkable. With mobile
phones, this sense of responsibility has not yet reached the majority of users, even though
important personal data, personal photos and even company data may be stored on smartphones.
Due to automatic synchronisation of emails and even files via cloud storage services, more may be
stored on the phone than the user really wants.
Mobile phones are small but expensive, making them a target for thieves. Security software must
make it difficult for thieves to access the data on them, reducing the attractiveness of stealing
them. Without protection, criminals have an easy job. After stealing a phone, the thief swaps the
SIM card, and the phone is no longer reachable by its owner. Alternatively, they may leave the
original SIM card in and make calls at the owner’s expense, or use it for further criminal activities.
To counteract such scenarios, modern security products for mobile phones are equipped with a range
of different features.
Theft protection
Almost all the products in the test provide a theft-protection feature. One of the most important
functions is the lock, which protects the smartphone with a password and thus prevents
unauthorised access. Remote deletion of data also belongs to the standard features of a security
program for smartphones. The locate function allows the phone to be found if it has been lost; we
note that in the case of theft, some manufacturers warn against using this feature to hunt the thief
down.
Manufacturers provide two different methods of controlling theft-protection features. The first is
text messages. Commands are sent from another phone and cause the relevant action to be carried
out. The second is a web interface. Both variants have their advantages and disadvantages. Textmessages almost always work, even if the sender is in a different country from the recipient phone.
On the other hand, web interfaces are very intuitive to use and often allow multiple devices to be
administered from one account. The disadvantage of text-message commands is that the user has to
note them, and requires a second mobile phone from which to send them. If the web interface is to
be used, the mobile phone must be connected to the Internet. In some circumstances, e.g. if the
phone is lost when abroad, the Internet connection may effectively have been disabled.
The location function is very useful, but can be misused to track people. It is possible to install
security software on someone else’s phone, or to give them a phone with the software pre-installed,
1
http://www.comscore.com/ger/Insights/Presentations_and_Whitepapers/2013/The_Mobile_Shift
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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in order to follow their movements. This is of course perfectly acceptable in the case of parents
keeping an eye on their children, but may be entirely inappropriate in other circumstances.
Malware protection
With the help of malware protection functions, smartphones can be scanned for malicious software,
which can then be quarantined or deleted. For this function to be effective, malware signatures
must be kept up to date. When travelling abroad, users need to take care not to fall into the
roaming-costs trap.
Due to its high and rapidly growing market share (currently 74.4%)2, we have once again used
Google’s Android operating system to test mobile security software. The report contains details of
products from leading manufacturers who chose to have their products tested and reviewed. The
tests were conducted in July 2013 using Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini smartphones running Android
4.1.2.
Battery usage
Late in the afternoon, a smartphone user might wish they had a portable power station with them.
The multiple functions of modern phones mean that even power-saving processors are not able to
reduce the battery usage greatly. GPS, email, Internet, and especially the large displays found in
most smartphones mean that power usage is high. It can easily happen that heavy use of the
smartphone means that the battery is empty by the afternoon. There are three ways to prevent this.
The user can make limited use of the phone, carry a solar-powered battery charger around, or take
measures to reduce the power consumption during use as much as possible.

Display settings: The display is the greatest user of power in the phone. It makes sense to
let the display adjust itself automatically to the ambient light, or to reduce it manually, in
order to save power. Some smartphones automatically reduce screen brightness when the
battery is low.

Locating: Switch GPS off. Navigating and locating the phone (e.g. for photos with geolocation) require a high degree of calculation by the processor, as the location must
constantly be recalculated. Only switch GPS on when you really need it. Likewise, WiFi and
Bluetooth should only be switched on when necessary. This applies to all functions of the
mobile phone; switch off what you do not need, and the battery will last noticeably longer.

Multi-tasking: Under Android, apps may run in the background, in some cases for a long
time, without being used at all. Using the Task Manager to close unused apps saves battery
life, as they would otherwise be using up power. In Android, the Task Manager can be
opened simply pressing and holding the Home button.
Exchange, Gmail: Not only email and contact synchronisation, but also Facebook and other social
networks such as LinkedIn update their data from the Internet. Some unknown background services
run which can be switched off or changed to a less frequent synchronisation schedule. Battery life
can be extended by a third if email synchronisation is changed from instant to every quarter of an
2
http://www.gartner.com/newsroom/id/2482816
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hour. This is also true for status updates from Facebook etc. Every new Facebook update switches
the display on and plays an audio notification, both of which use up the battery.
Security Software: Many users are still convinced that security software on an Android smartphone
is power-hungry. However, our tests show that this is no longer the case. The effect of security
software on battery life can be more or less ignored. Backups, updates and malware scans, on the
other hand, clearly do increase battery usage significantly. There is an advantage to products that
can be configured so that they only carry out such operations when the device is on charge.
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Overview
The perfect mobile security product does not exist. However, this report enables you to compare the
advantages and disadvantages of each of the products and narrow down the choice. Installing the
test version of potentially suitable products makes it easier to decide on the best solution. New
versions of products, with improvements and new features, are released especially frequently in the
field of Android security products.
By participating in this test, the manufacturers have
shown their dedication to producing high-quality
mobile security software for their customers. The report
shows that we have found errors or imperfectly
functioning features; the manufacturers have taken
these problems very seriously and are already working
on solutions. In many cases the errors have already
been fixed. As the core functionality of the tested
products has already reached a very good standard, we are pleased to be able to give our Approved
Award to all the participating products.
AhnLab V3 Mobile makes a very mature impression. It offers innovative functions such as file
encryption and a well-designed network monitor.
avast! Mobile Security is a very comprehensive security product and is even available free. The
suite, which already had a great range of features last year, now boasts a web interface too.
New to the market is Baidu Mobile Manager, which is available free, in Chinese only. As well as
security features, it contains a number of check-up functions to improve the phone’s performance.
Bitdefender Mobile Security is a clearly designed security product. The well-designed web
interface, which can be used to manage multiple devices, stands out.
In terms of optical design, ESET Mobile Security has been greatly revised in the new version. This
has had a very positive effect on the usability of the product, which is outstanding. The app offers
good functionality too.
F-Secure Mobile Security and Trend Micro’s Mobile Security offer optimal security for families. As
well as classic features such as theft protection, both suites provide comprehensive parental
controls, which protect children when surfing the Internet.
IKARUS mobile.security provides the user with a clearly designed security product containing all
the important features. Additionally, more exotic but valuable functions such as a URL blocker and
USSD protection are included.
Kaspersky Mobile Security allows users to protect their private sphere by hiding text messages, call
logs and contacts. The biggest change in this year’s version is the inclusion of a web interface.
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Kingsoft Mobile Security is available free, in Chinese only. The security product is very simple to
use, and offers useful features such as a secure QR-code scanner and ad blocker.
The integrated backup feature of Lookout PREMIUM prevents data being lost by saving it to the
cloud. The other features of the suite also impressed in our test.
Qihoo 360 MobileSafe is a free security product, currently available only in Chinese3. The product
has a wide range of functions, including theft protection, various optimisation tools, app manager,
network manager, and spam blocker.
Taking part in our review for the first time is Quick Heal Total Security. The product surprised us
pleasantly with its extensive functionality. Practical components such as the backup feature and
network monitor round the suite off.
Relative to last year, Sophos Security and Antivirus has made a quantum leap. The mini-app has
developed into a comprehensive security suite, which impressed us in terms of both optical design
and functionality.
Tencent Mobile Manager is a free security product in Chinese language. The well-designed app
provides theft-protection, privacy protection, and other innovative functions.
Users who want to be able to control theft-protection features using both text messages and a web
interface should take a look at Webroot SecureAnywhere Mobile. Its various app inspectors can
also find resource-hungry apps.
3
An English version will be soon available.
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Tested products
The products listed below were tested for this report. The manufacturers either provided us with the
newest versions of their respective products, or confirmed that the latest version was available from
the Google Play store (as at July 2013). After the test, the manufacturers were given the
opportunity to rectify any errors we found in their products. We have noted in the report any
problems that have subsequently been fixed.
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AhnLab V3 Mobile 2.1.0.3.178
Avast! Mobile Security 2.0.4993
Baidu Mobile Manager 2.0
Bitdefender Mobile Security Premium
1.2.365
ESET Mobile Security 2.0.766.0-0
F-Secure Mobile Security 8.1.12262
IKARUS mobile.security 1.7.13
Kaspersky Mobile Security 10.4.47
Kingsoft Mobile Security 2.3.2.775
Lookout Premium 8.17-8a39d3f
Sophos Security and Antivirus 3.0.1154(7)
Tencent Mobile Manager 4.1.1.986
Trend Micro Mobile Security 3.1.0.1095
Qihoo 360 MobileSafe 4.0.1
Quick Heal Total Security 1.01.063
Webroot SecureAnywhere Mobile
3.3.0.5566
The mobile products of Baidu, Kingsoft, Qihoo 360 and Tencent are currently only available in
Chinese. The full reports on these products are thus only included in the Chinese version of the
review, available on our Website4.
A comprehensive list of all the mobile security products available on the market can be found under
http://www.av-comparatives.org/list-mobile/
4
http://www.av-comparatives.org/mobile-security/
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Battery usage
Measuring the battery usage of a device would at first glance appear to be very easy. When one
takes a closer look, however, it becomes apparent that there are difficulties. In particular, the way
individual users use their mobile phones can vary greatly. Some make use of the phone’s multimedia
capabilities; others use the phone to read documents, while some still just use it as a phone. We
need to distinguish between power users, who take full advantage of the phone’s technical
capabilities and functions, and “traditional” users who just use it for phone calls.
In order to find the right balance of telephone usage for this test, we conducted a survey in April
2012. Over a thousand smartphone users from all over the world were asked to respond anonymously
to our questions about how they used their phones. It became clear that most users take full
advantage of the capabilities of their phones. 95% surf and mail with their phones, over 66% listen
to music over the Internet or watch online videos. It is noteworthy that 70% of users never switch
their phones off.
Smartphones are becoming more and more important, and very few users leave any function of their
phones unused. The smartphone is becoming the omnipresent means of communication, an
extension and even replacement of the computer. Telephony is becoming more of a background
function, with over 41% of users spending 10 minutes or less actually talking on their phones. 29%
of the users spend more than an hour a day on the Internet.
The answers from our mobile security survey (April 2012) were used as the basis for our usage
statistics. This data was used to form the typical daily usage patterns for the battery-life test.
Environmental conditions
To measure the battery usage (battery drain) precisely, we worked with x.test and Agilent to use an
ISO-calibrated measuring device for our tests. This high-precision instrument can measure battery
drain exactly. An automated standard test run, emulating real users in accordance with the survey
data, was carried out multiple times.
External Influences
In order to exclude environmental and technical influences, we took pains to ensure that each
device was tested under exactly the same conditions, compatible with influences ECMA-3835.
The 3G and WiFi connections are susceptible to variations caused by e.g. the weather conditions. In
order to minimise/remove such fluctuations, we put a WiFi base station and our own UMTS base
station in our testing lab. We could thus determine that the energy required establishing a wireless
connection was the same for each product.
Battery usage is naturally dependent on the type of mobile phone. Various factors influence battery
drain, an important one being the nature of the display. A larger screen will of course take more
battery power than a smaller one. The type of display (LCD, OLED, AMOLED, etc.) is also relevant.
Using the same phone for all test candidates allowed us to rule out any such differences influencing
our test.
5
http://www.ecma-international.org/publications/files/ECMA-ST/ECMA-383.pdf
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We measured the power consumption while performing the following task based on average usage
(according to our mobile phone usage survey) as follows:







Making phone calls (30 minutes a day)
Viewing pictures (82 minutes a day)
Browsing websites (stored on a local server to avoid the
influence of Internet connection speed fluctuations; 45
minutes a day)
Watching YouTube videos online with the integrated
YouTube app (17 minutes a day)
Watching locally stored videos on the device (13 minutes
a day)
Receiving and sending mails using the integrated Google
Mail client (2 minutes a day)
Opening documents stored on the device, like PDFs and
Word documents (1 minute a day)
In our test, we found that most mobile security products only have a minor impact on battery life.
Manufacturer
AhnLab
avast!
Baidu
Bitdefender
ESET
F-Secure
IKARUS
Kaspersky
Battery usage
Manufacturer
Battery usage
Kingsoft
Lookout
Sophos
Tencent
Trend Micro
Qihoo
Quick Heal
Webroot
Overall, we can give the manufacturers of mobile security suites good marks when it comes to
battery usage. In this year‘s Battery-Drain Test, there were however two products that did not reach
the top level:
 Qihoo has very fancy animations, e.g. when connecting a phone call. This looks pretty, but
takes processor usage, which ultimately places a strain on the battery.
 In the case of Webroot, we were able to trace the increased battery usage to the “Execution
Shield“, a real-time protection component that checks every app on execution for malware and
sends its hash to the cloud. When this feature was deactivated, the battery usage sank to below
3%. After the test, Webroot released a newer version (3.4.0.5650). At their request, we re-ran
the test using this version. A small improvement was noted, but the score remained above 3%.
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Detection of Android malware
Methods of attacking mobile phones are getting more and more sophisticated. Fraudulent
applications attempt to steal smartphone users‘ data or money. To reduce the risk of this happening,
follow the advice given here. Only download apps from Google Play or reputable app makers‘ own
stores. Avoid third-party stores and Sideloading 6 . Another indication of untrustworthy apps is
irrelevant access rights. For example, an app that measures the speed at which you are travelling
has no need to access your phone book or call log. Of course, even if an app does this, it is not a
clear-cut indication that it is malicious, but it makes sense to consider whether it is genuine and
should be used. A look at the reviews in the app store is also a guide; avoid apps with bad or
dubious reviews. If you Root your smartphone, you will have more functionality on the phone, but
equally the opportunity for malicious apps to take control will also increase. Another point to
consider is the warranty. It is not legally clear cut whether the warranty is still valid if the phone is
rooted. In many cases, the warranty will be considered null and void.
How great is the risk of infection with an Android smartphone?
This question is difficult to answer, as it depends on many different factors. In western countries, if
using only official stores such as Google Play, the risk is lower than in many Asian countries,
especially China. There are many rooted phones and unofficial app stores, which increase the chance
of installing a dangerous app. In many Asian countries the smartphone is used as a replacement for
the PC, and is frequently used for online banking. Banking apps are also becoming more popular in
Europe and the USA. There is a high risk involved in receiving the mTan code on the same phone
that is used to carry out a money transfer. In western countries, assuming you stick to official app
stores and don’t root your phone, the risk is currently relatively low, in our opinion. However, we
must point out that “low risk” is not the same as “no risk”. Also, the threat situation can change
quickly and dramatically. It is better to be ready for this, and to install security software on your
smartphone. Currently, we would say that protection against data loss in the event of the phone
being lost or stolen is more important than malware protection.
AVC UnDroid Analyser
At this point we would like to introduce AVC UnDroid, our new
malware analysis tool, which is available free to users. It is a static
analysis system for detecting suspected Android malware and adware
and providing statistics about it. Users can upload .apk files and see
the results in various analysis mechanisms.
We invite readers to try it out: http://www.av-comparatives.org/avc-analyzer/
6
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sideloading
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Test Set
The malware used in the test was collected by us in the four weeks prior to the start of the test.
2,947 malicious applications were used to form a representative test set. So-called “potentially
unwanted apps” were not included. The security products were updated and tested on the 23rd of
July 2013.
The test was carried out on genuine Android smartphones (no emulators were used). The test set
consisted exclusively of .apk files. Each individual app was manually installed; this was done to test
which technologies were employed by each security product to protect against malicious apps.
We also carried out a false-positive test. The top 100 apps from Google Play that are not supported
by advertising were used for this. None of the security products tested produced any false alarms
with these 100 clean apps.
Detection rate results
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.
AhnLab , Kingsoft
Kaspersky
Baidu, ESET
Bitdefender
avast!
Webroot
Quick Heal
Tencent
F-Secure
Sophos
Lookout
Trend Micro
Qihoo
Ikarus
99.9%
99.7%
99.6%
99.4%
99.0%
98.9%
98.6%
98.1%
97.1%
96.3%
96.0%
95.6%
93.6%
91.0%
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corner of the screen; immediately after
installation, both are shown as “N/A”.
AhnLab V3 Mobile
AhnLab V3 Mobile is a security product for
Android, with the most important security
features, such as a malware scanner, theft
protection and anti-spam.
Scan
The Scan module allows the user to run two
different scan types: Smart Scan, which
checks all installed apps for malicious
behaviour, and Intense Scan, which
additionally checks all files on the device.
Details of the last Scheduled Scan are also
shown, as is the time of the next one. The
settings for this can be changed in the global
configuration menu. The interval (daily or
weekly) can be set, as can the time of day.
The settings also include options for the
sensitivity of the scan.
Installation
AhnLab V3 Mobile was provided for us by
AhnLab as an APK file. Installation was a
simple process. After the licence agreement
had been accepted, we had to register the
device, which took only a few seconds and did
not require the entry of any further user
information. We were then taken to the start
screen.
Anti-Theft Protection
To use this component, a password of
between 4 and 10 characters must be created.
The app also has to be registered as a device
administrator. Overall, we found the setup
very simple. Text-messages are used to
control the theft-protection component; there
is no web interface. The commands are listed
in an overview and can be tested.
Starting the program
There is no introduction to AhnLab V3 Mobile,
the user simply has to explore the product to
discover its features. There is no initial
update. The real-time protection, which is
activated by default, can be switched on or
off directly from the home screen. All the
other components can be activated from the
same place. The details of the last update and
last scan are shown in the bottom right-hand
Lock
Text-message command:
“#lock <Password> <Message>“
This command locks the smartphone,
preventing it being accessed by unauthorised
persons. The previously defined password is
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needed here. We liked the fact that it is
possible to send a personal message to be
displayed on the lock screen. Another plus
point is that after 10 incorrect password
entries, a text message with the position of
the phone will be automatically sent to the
sender of the lock command.
Remote Wipe Reset
Text-message command: “#kill <Password>“
This command deletes personal data and
resets the device to factory settings.
In contrast to the Remote Data Delete, the
result of this was not satisfactory. Neither the
contacts on the SIM card nor the files on the
SD card were deleted. We would recommend
sending the Remote Data Delete command
before using Remote Wipe Reset.
A minus point is that the lock screen does not
allow emergency calls to be made. It is also
not very secure. Pressing the Home button
shows the Home screen; it is possible to
navigate through this and view installed apps.
It is also possible to start programs, even if
the lock screen then appears after a few
seconds. The lock screen is thus not really up
to the task.
Remote Location Tracking
Text-message
command:
“#locate
<Password>“
When the command has been sent, the sender
promptly receives a reply with a link to the
phone’s location in Google Maps, complete
with co-ordinates. Whilst the term “tracking”
suggests a continuous trail is recorded, rather
than one-off points, we found the locate
function worked very well.
Remote Data Delete
Text-message
command:
“#remove
<Password>“
This command deletes personal data from the
phone. The phone is not returned to factory
settings, which means that the anti-theft
software remains installed and working.
Although the text-message log was not
deleted, we found that this component very
largely worked well. All the contacts, files,
calendar entries, browser history and
bookmarks were wiped. It was however
possible to recover data from the SD card with
common freeware tools.
SIM card swap
If the SIM card is changed, an SMS containing
details of the phone’s location will be sent to
the trusted phone number.
Anti-Spam
AhnLab’s anti-spam component enables calls
and texts to be blocked using a blacklist.
There are a few possible ways of adding
numbers: from the call and text-message logs,
from the address book, or manually. For each
number, it is possible to block just calls, just
texts, or both.
Additionally, texts can be blocked based on
their content. Keywords with a length of
between two and ten words can be defined.
We don’t know why there is an upper wordlength limit. We also note that the filter
function is case-sensitive, which again seems
to be a questionable restriction.
All blocked calls and texts can be displayed in
a sub-menu. We found the functionality of the
anti-spam function to be satisfactory overall.
The component is not activated by default;
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is a file with the ending *.aed, which cannot
be opened. Decryption also uses the AhnLab
software. There is no restriction on the type
of files that can be encrypted, so pictures,
videos, PDF files etc. can all be protected this
way.
this was not initially clear to us, and in our
test we assumed it was not working. Showing
the status of the feature within its menus
would be an improvement.
Network Management
The Network Management menu gathers
together network-related functions.
Updates
Updates are carried out automatically. The
user can decide whether this happens only
over WiFi or using the mobile network as well.
As with scheduled scans, the timing of
automatic updates can be configured.
When the device connects to a WiFi hotspot, a
pop-up appears that allows the user to
deactivate WiFi, or permanently allow or deny
access to this hotspot. A list of known access
points allows these to be managed.
Help
AhnLab’s help function has been very clearly
organised. We liked the step-by-step
instructions for particular tasks. However, we
were rather annoyed to find that pressing the
Back button when using help returns the user
to the Start screen or main Help page.
Deinstallation
There is no deinstallation wizard, but a stepby-step guide is provided in the Help
function. The app has to be removed from the
device administrators, and can then be
uninstalled using the Android App Manager.
We were not required to enter a password to
remove the program. This represents a
security risk, as a thief can easily uninstall
the theft protection.
Summary
AhnLab V3 Mobile provides the most
important security features for Android
Smartphones. As well as the classic functions,
the program provides innovative features such
as file encryption and network management.
The use of mobile networks can be limited; if
mobile network usage reaches a pre-defined
limit, the user will be alerted. Network
Monitoring provides the user with data usage
statistics. These can be sorted according to
mobile and WLAN traffic. The amounts of data
uploaded and downloaded within various time
periods can be displayed separately.
File Encryption
File Encryption allows individual files to be
encrypted. Via a file browser, multiple files
can be selected and encrypted using a
password of four to ten characters. The result
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Virus Scanner
The Virus Scanner checks all installed apps for
malware. The user can optionally select to
activate file scanning as well. Pressing and
holding this checkbox produces a menu, from
which a specific folder can be selected for
scanning. Along the bottom of the screen are
buttons for configuring an automatic scan.
Day and time can be selected.
avast! Mobile Security
avast! Mobile Security is a comprehensive
security product for mobile telephones and
tablets, provided free of charge. Its main
functions
include
antivirus,
browser
protection and theft protection.
Anti-Theft
The Anti-Theft component is a stand-alone
application that has to be installed
separately. This has the advantage that the
Anti-Theft app can be hidden; it is seamlessly
integrated with the rest of the suite, and the
user would otherwise not notice that it is an
independent program.
The installation requires an easy but relatively
comprehensive setup procedure. A name, the
telephone number of a friend/family member,
and a 4-6 digit PIN have to be entered. The
avast! account then has to be registered, and
the user has to log on, if the web interface is
to be used.
Activating
the
Anti-Theft
component
automatically puts it into Stealth Mode,
meaning it is hidden from view. It can be
unhidden by calling the number used as the
PIN.
Installation
We installed avast! Mobile Security via the
Google Play Store. The installation process
was very simple, requiring only the
acceptance of the licence agreement. The user
can decide whether to send anonymous usage
data to the manufacturer.
A very loud yellow symbol makes very clear
that configuration has not been completed,
and it is pointed out that avast! must be
assigned administrator privileges.
Starting the program
When the program is first started, the home
screen is displayed; this indicates the wide
scope of the product. The obvious status
display in the top right-hand corner of the
screen initially indicates “Outdated”, but once
the automatic update has been carried out,
this changes to “Secured”.
Navigating the menu system is very largely
intuitive. Only the activity logs, which are
displayed by swiping to the right, might
remain undiscovered by some users.
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The Anti-Theft component can be controlled
either via a web interface, or by using a
multitude of text-message commands. As well
as the standard lock, locate and wipe
commands, avast! offers functions such as the
forwarding of SMS messages, calls and call
logs. A complete list of the available
functions can be seen by going to
http://www.avast.com/en-gb/free-mobilesecurity#tab3 and clicking on “Control via
SMS”.
The Lock function is not without its problems
in practice. When the phone is locked, it is
still possible to open the Android Notification
Bar, and thus change settings, by swiping the
screen downwards. Holding the Home button
displays the list of recently used apps,
whereby personal information could be
visible. avast! inform us that this will be
rectified in the next release.
Lock
Text-message command: “<PIN> LOCK“
When the command has been received, the
device is locked and the lock screen
displayed. Honest finders are asked to notify
avast! that the device has been found (the
lock-screen text can be customised). This
involves sending the the IMEI (International
Mobile Equipment Identity, unique identifying
number) to android@avast.com. The IMEI is
displayed on the lock screen. Additionally, the
phone plays the audio message “This phone
has been lost or stolen” (only available in
English). The device can be unlocked by
entering the correct PIN.
Additionally, it is not possible to make an
emergency phone call, which could prove
dangerous, and may be illegal in some
countries.
Siren
Text-message command: “<PIN> SIREN ON“
This command plays the same sound as when
the phone is locked, but without locking the
phone. It is thus useful for locating the
phone when it has been mislaid.
Locate
Text-message command: “<PIN> LOCATE
<INTERVALL>“.
This command is used to find the location of
the phone. The sender of the text command
receives a reply with a link to an online map
with location co-ordinates, mobile phone
service provider and mast. The optional
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user then taps a specific app, detailed
information is displayed, along with a button
that to stop the program immediately.
parameter Intervall indicates how often, in
minutes, the process is repeated. Frequent
sending of location data allows continual
tracking of the phone’s location to be carried
out. This web interface is obviously ideal for
this, as the movements of the phone can be
clearly displayed on a map.
Application Manager
The Application Manager analyses running and
installed apps’ use of CPU, RAM, storage and
other resources, and allows users to stop apps
they consider too greedy.
Wipe
Text-message command: „<PIN> WIPE“
avast! Mobile Security provides two variants
of the Wipe function. There is a standard
delete function, or thorough delete can be
found in the advanced settings of Anti-Theft.
Both deletion types reset our test device to
factory settings, whereby all our personal data
and all files on the internal storage were
deleted.
The thorough delete variant wrote 1,000 junk
files of 1 MB each onto the internal storage,
as a means of making it impossible to recover
any of the original data.
In our test, with both forms of deletion, only
media files such as .mp3 or .jpg were deleted.
All other file types (in our test we had .exe,
.dll and .txt files) remained unaltered on the
card.
Shield Control
Various real-time protection functions can be
found under Shield Control. These are as
follows:
Even in the case of thorough deletion, we
found that those files that were deleted from
the SD card could be restored with a free
program.
App Shield
App Shield scans apps for malicious functions,
either during installation or on execution,
according to configuration.
Hard Reset Protection
For users with rooted devices avast! offers a
hard reset protection. By enabling this
function the security product survives a
factory reset and will not be removed.
Web Shield
This component protects the user from
phishing sites and web pages with malicious
code. Both the standard browser and Google
Chrome are supported.
Privacy Advisor
The Privacy Advisor categorises apps that
require special privileges such as Access
Messages. This provides users with an
overview of potential data protection issues
on their devices. Tapping any of the six
categories shows the apps listed within. If the
Avast also provides a spelling checker, which
is supposed to recognise and correct wrongly
typed URLs (to prevent typo-squatting).
However, in our test, we were unable to find a
case where this feature was activated.
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section is provided, which should cover most
questions and problems.
Message Shield
This scans all incoming messages for phishing
links and dangerous URLs. This worked
reliably in our test. The feature can also be
used to block messages from unknown
senders.
File Shield
This scans files on read/write for malicious
behaviour. This also worked perfectly in our
test.
Deinstallation
A deinstallation wizard is provided for the
user to remove the theft protection. This
requires the PIN to be entered. This also has
to be entered if the app is uninstalled using
the Android App Manager, meaning that the
theft protection cannot be uninstalled by
unauthorised users.
SMS and Call Filter
In order to prevent unwanted calls and texts,
avast! provides the SMS and Call Filter. This
allows groups to be created, for which calls
and texts can be blocked, either at particular
times or altogether.
Future prospects
avast! have announced a future commercial
version, which is to include additional
functions such as backup of apps and photos,
extended anti-theft, application locking, and
an advanced privacy scanner.
The members of a group can be contacts from
the address book, phone numbers, or fields
such as all anonymous callers or senders.
avast! use the blacklisting principle here.
Licence
avast! Mobile Security is available free to
everyone without any restriction of
functionality.
Firewall
The firewall can only be activated if the
device has been rooted. This is a normal
restriction of the operating system for nonrooted devices.
Summary
avast! Mobile Security provides a wide range
of functionality and is available free. We
particularly liked the various configuration
options and remote commands, which allow
extensive remote control functions.
Network Meter
This component lists the volume of data used
by all installed apps. This can be itemised by
WiFi, 3G, Roaming or All. Tapping one of the
apps allows its data use to be shown by date
(today, month, year).
Update
avast! Mobile Security is automatically
updated by default. The user can decide
whether this should occur via WiFi, 3G or
roaming connections.
Help
Apart from the Anti-Theft feature, avast! do
not provide any local help on the smartphone.
Users requiring assistance have to visit the
manufacturer’s website; a comprehensive FAQ
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Bitdefender Mobile Security Premium
Bitdefender Mobile Security Premium is
available as a 14-day trial version. When the
trial period has expired, the user has to
purchase a licence. The software combines a
cloud-based malware scanner with surfing
protection and theft protection. The latter
can be operated by web or text-message
interface.
After a malware scan there are 3 scenarios:
the user sees a green status, meaning the
device is safe, or an orange or red status, if
there are issues that require the user’s
attention. There is no mention of update
status; this is because virus definitions are
not stored locally, but in the cloud.
Malware Scanner
This enables the user to check installed apps
and the memory of the mobile phone for
malware. Only one configuration option is
available to the user, namely whether to start
a scan automatically when the mobile phone
is connected to another device.
The malware scanner only works if there is an
Internet connection, due to the use of the
cloud for detection.
Application Audit
The Application Audit feature lists all apps
that have special permissions, such as
Internet access, access to private data or
chargeable services. The apps can be filtered
by category, in order to provide an overview.
Clicking on one of the listed apps takes the
user to the relevant Android App Info page.
Installation
Bitdefender was easy to install from the
Google Play store. After the licence agreement
has been accepted, the user has to assign the
device a name for use with the web interface,
and then log in to a Bitdefender account or
specify a Google account. This is also for use
with the web interface. A brief overview of
the features is displayed; installation is then
complete, and the home screen of the
program is displayed.
Web Security
Web Security protects the user against
phishing attacks, untrustworthy websites and
malware. It works with the standard Android
browser and Google Chrome.
Anti-Theft
The theft protection module is deactivated by
default. It can be operated using a stylish
web interface 7 , which allows the
Starting the program
After
successful
completion
of
the
installation, the user sees a very prominent
notification (in yellow) that a scan should be
run, along with a reminder (where applicable)
that a 14-day test version is being used.
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administration of multiple devices, or textmessage commands.
Locate
Text-message command: “bd-<PIN> locate“
This command locates the device in the event
of loss or theft. When the command has been
sent, the sender receives by return a message
with a link to Google Maps, showing the
location and the time this was determined. If
the web interface is used, this similarly shows
the position on a map. There is no means of
tracking the device by means of continuous
location determination.
Starting the Anti-Theft component displays a
brief overview, then asks the user to provide
the app with administrator rights. A PIN of
between four and eight digits must be
defined, and a trusted telephone number
entered. The latter is used to send
notifications to in the event of a SIM-card
change. It is also the only number that can be
used to send a Wipe command.
Lock
Text-message command: “bd-<PIN> lock“
This command locks the device and so
protects
against
unauthorised
access.
Bitdefender uses the standard lock screen
integrated into Android. This does not allow
any logos or messages to be displayed, but is
entirely secure; it is not possible to get
around it, and it is always possible to make
an emergency call.
There is a range of options for both methods
of operation (web and text). For example, it is
possible to disable some elements of the web
interface functionality, or text messaging in
its entirety. The PIN has to be entered to
make any configuration changes.
Wipe
Text-message command: “bd-<PIN> wipe“
This function deletes all personal data from
the user’s smartphone, making it inaccessible
to third parties. Once the command has been
received, the device is immediately reset to
factory settings.
Unfortunately we note that none of the files
on the external SD card were deleted.
Call me
Text-message command: “bd-<PIN> callme”
This function can only be operated by text
message. It causes the device to call the
sender’s
number,
and
activates
the
loudspeaker. It allows contact to made with
an honest finder.
Answer
Text-message command: “bd-<PIN> answer“
This function is similar to Call Me. In this
case, the text message is sent, and then the
user can call the device, which will
automatically answer.
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In our test, this feature did not work. The call
was not answered, and we did not receive any
text messages in reply. Bitdefender inform us
that the feature does not work with Android
4.1 or above.
Help
There is no specific help function for the
software. However, each function has its own
brief but useful information text.
Deinstallation
There is no uninstaller provided to remove the
software. The user thus has to know that
administrator rights have to be removed. This
requires entering the PIN, to prevent a thief
from disabling the software.
Licence
Bitdefender Mobile Security can be tested free
for 14 days. A licence is then required, which
costs €8.99 if purchased In-App.
Summary
Bitdefender Mobile Security provides the user
with an easy-to-use security product for the
smartphone. It has a comprehensive range of
anti-theft functions.
A plus point is the intuitively designed web
interface, which allows the user to manage
multiple smartphones from one account.
When it comes to the malware scanner, we
feel that Bitdefender should not rely on the
cloud alone, as malware recognition is not
possible without an Internet connection.
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are marked with a green tick, inactive ones
with a grey on/off switch, and components
requiring attention with an orange triangle.
Additionally, Premium Components (only
available in the Premium version) display a
blue banner. The Premium suite can be tested
free for 30 days; an email address has to be
provided.
ESET Mobile Security
ESET Mobile Security is a security app that
includes the components Antivirus und AntiTheft. The Premium version additionally
provides SMS and Call Filters, Anti-Phishing
and System Audit components and advances
Anti-Theft features; in particular a remote
wipe and a SIM Guard.
Antivirus
The Antivirus feature allows the system to be
scanned for malware. The depth of scanning
can be configured, and the quarantine list,
scan logs and update details can be seen. The
advanced settings allow the user to change
items configured during the installation, and
to set the default reaction when malware is
discovered.
Anti-Theft
The Anti-Theft component has to be
configured on the first start. This involves
entering a security password, with an optional
reminder phrase. Although there is no
minimum password length, ESET warns users
that short passwords are not secure. To
prevent unauthorised deinstallation of the
program, it is suggested that the program
should be made a device administrator. Next,
there is information about text-message
commands, and the possibility to use a
different password for these. After this, the
current SIM card is registered as trusted, and
a trusted phone number is entered. We liked
the fact that it is possible to edit the text
displayed when the device is locked. To use
text-message commands for this feature, a
password is required. A unique Anti-Theft
password is recommended, although the
standard security password can be used.
Installation
We installed ESET Mobile Security from the
Google Play Store. When the program is first
started, an end-user licence agreement has to
be accepted. The user can also agree to send
anonymous usage data to ESET by means of a
checkbox, an option that is disabled by
default. In the next configuration step, ESET
Live Grid can be deactivated (it is active by
default); this is an early-warning system,
which uses data recently gathered from
participating users. Finally the licence is
checked, and a notification informs the user
that an initial scan is going to start.
SIM Guard
This feature is intended to prevent
unauthorised changes of the SIM card. If an
unregistered SIM card is inserted, the device
is locked. The function worked perfectly in our
tests; we had the choice of entering the
security password to unlock the phone, or
calling emergency numbers. We note that
Starting the program
After the initial configuration, the user is
taken to a clear home screen (see screenshot
above). This provides to all the individual
components of the suite. Active components
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after an unregistered SIM card has been
inserted, a password confirmation is required,
even after the original card has been reinserted. There is a slight security risk here,
in that there is no limit to the number of
attempts to enter the password, but we
otherwise found the function sensible and
well executed.
retained. However, calendar entries, browser
history, Favorites and SMS log are not
deleted. ESET inform us that they have plans
to rectify this in the next product update. On
the other hand, the memory cards were wiped
clean, and it was impossible to recover data
from the external SD card using a commonly
used free program.
Lock
Text-message
command:
“eset
lock
<Password>”
When the command has been received, the
device is locked and the lock screen is
displayed. The message sender will also
receive a confirmation text message with IMEI
and IMSI (device identification data). The
same highly resistant lock screen is deployed
as for the SIM Guard. If the user has forgotten
the password, they can either send a reset
command from another phone, or send a reset
email directly from the lock screen of their
own phone.
SMS & Call Filter (Premium)
This function enables the user to create
comprehensive rules for blacklisting and
whitelisting calls and messages. Rules can be
set up to determine what sort of contact is
allowed for particular people at particular
times.
Siren
Text-message
command:
“eset
siren
<Password>”
This command provides the same functionality
as Lock, except that additionally a very loud
alarm sound is played for a minute.
Find
Text-message
command:
“eset
find
<Password>“
This component allows a stolen or lost
smartphone to be located. After sending the
text message, the message sender receives a
reply containing a link to Google Maps with
the relevant co-ordinates for the phone’s
location.
Anti-Phishing (Premium)
Anti-Phishing protects the user against
phishing sites when browsing the Internet.
ESET checks the installed browsers for
compatibility. Although ESET Mobile Security
claims that it “integrates with most common
browsers”, in practice this only means the
Android browser and Google Chrome. Firefox,
Opera and Dolphin are not supported.
Wipe
Text-message
command:
“eset
wipe
<Password>“
This feature deletes all personal data from the
user’s smartphone, to prevent this being read
by third parties. The phone is NOT reset to
factory settings, in order that the software
remains installed and its anti-theft functions
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uninstalling, and then proceeds with a single
click.
Licence
The majority of the functions are included in
the free version of the software. A licence for
the Premium features such as automatic
scans,
automatic
updates,
phishing
protection, SIM Lock, Wipe and Security Audit
can be obtained for $14.95 a year from
www.eset.com. These features can be tested
free for 30 days.
Summary
ESET offers a slick security suite for Android
smartphones, which impressed us with its
intuitive interface. The functionality of ESET
Mobile Security is equally well thought-out.
In our test, the phishing protection worked
perfectly for the two supported browsers. A
warning page from ESET was displayed,
recommending that the user leave the site
immediately.
Aside from the wipe function missing some
data (which ESET have promised to rectify),
we have one suggestion for improvement: the
product would be completed by the inclusion
of a web interface.
Security Audit (Premium)
The Security Audit feature provides
information about system settings and
program privileges that might represent a
security risk. In our test, we were informed
that, amongst other things, the USB Debug
Mode and Installation From Unknown Sources
settings were active. The Device Monitoring
feature includes notifications such as roaming
calls and data, insecure WiFi connections, and
memory usage.
Help
ESET provides the user with a help file that
covers all the available components. Tapping
the question-mark symbol in a component
takes the user to the appropriate section of
the help text.
Deinstallation
The program can be uninstalled from its own
settings menu, or from the Android App
Manager. If the Anti-Theft component is
activated, the security password has to be
entered, regardless of which deinstallation
method is used. Removing the app via the
internal menu asks for the reason for
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Starting the program
The program’s start screen displays the message
that the device is protected, along with the
number of days of the trial period remaining.
Navigating through the app is done by means of
swipe gestures or tapping the buttons displayed
along the bottom of the screen.
F-Secure Mobile Security
F-Secure Mobile Security is a security product that
provides all the important functions of a mobile
suite. As well as anti-theft and antivirus
protection, the Premium version of the software
also includes parental controls, browser
protection and a call/text blocking function.
Anti-Virus
This component protects the system against
malware. The respective dates of the last update
and last scan are shown. A full device scan can be
started, or a scheduled scan configured; the
frequency can be set to daily, weekly or monthly.
Additionally, the Cloud Protection feature can be
either deactivated completely, or set to run only
when no roaming costs would be incurred. There
is also an option to switch off the real-time
protection.
Anti-Theft
The Anti-Theft component is controlled by
sending text-message commands to the phone, in
combination with the password. There is no web
interface. The functions available are as follows:
Lock
Text-message command: “#lock#<Password>”
This command locks the phone’s screen using the
Android lock screen. This is very robust, and
prevents any unauthorised access to the device.
Once the command has been sent, the PINrequirement for the lock screen is permanently
switched on.
Installation
We downloaded and installed F-Secure’s suite
from the Google Play store. When the app is first
started, the user is required to accept the licence
agreement,
which
requires
an
Internet
connection. A 30-day trial licence can then be
activated. Setting up the theft protection requires
that a security password be created; this must be
at least 5 characters long and is checked for
complexity. We were not allowed to use “qqqqq”
as a password, although no information was
supplied as to what would be acceptable. We then
tried “qqqq1” and this was accepted. After
creating the password, the user has to enter a
trusted phone number, which will be used to
receive messages about SIM-card changes. Finally,
F-Secure offers to run an initial scan.
Locate
Text-message command: “#locate#<Password>“
This function enables a lost or stolen phone to be
found. When the command has been sent, the
sender receives a message by return with the coordinates of the phone, and a link to Google
Maps.
Alarm
Text-message command:
“#alarm#<Password>#<Count>“
This command functions in the same way as the
Lock command, but additionally sounds an alarm.
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The parameter Count determines the number of
times the alarm will be set off; if this is not
stated, the alarm sounds continuously. Setting
the parameter to “0” switches the alarm off.
Wipe
Text-message command: “#wipe#<Password>“
The Wipe command serves to delete all personal
data stored on the smartphone. First of all, the
external SD card is wiped, then the device is reset
to factory settings. In our test, all data was
successfully deleted except for Contacts on the
SIM card; the deletion process was completed in
just a few moments. We were unable to restore
any of the deleted data using our free tool.
If Parental Control is enabled, F-Secure’s Safe
Browser is always used to view websites.
Parental Control
This feature makes inappropriate Internet
content/installed apps inaccessible to children.
The user can choose between the profiles Child,
Teen and Adult, each of which has a different
preconfigured filter. Each level can be individually
adapted. Examples of content areas that can be
blocked are weapons, gambling and illegal
downloads.
Whilst we approve of Safe Browser in principle,
we feel that global phishing protection, where
the user has the choice of which browser to use,
would be more practical.
Safe Contacts
This feature enables the blocking of calls and text
messages from particular numbers, which can be
entered manually or imported from the Contacts
list. A simple blacklist is used. If a number is
added to the list, all incoming and outgoing calls
and all incoming text messages are blocked. It is
not possible to block just calls or just texts.
Help
F-Secure provides an online FAQ. Additionally,
each component has its own short but
informative help text.
Safe Browser
F-Secure’s Safe Browser feature provides a
separate browser app that protects against
phishing sites. It is possible to block other
browsers and allow only the Safe Browser to be
used. If a page is blocked, a warning message is
shown with the options of going back or
continuing:
Deinstallation
Deinstallation is password protected. Under the
menu More | About is a deinstallation wizard.
Once the password has been entered, the program
is removed immediately. The software can also be
uninstalled from the Android App Manager; it first
has to be removed from the list of device
administrators, which also requires the password
to be entered.
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Licence
F-Secure allows the user to test all features of the
program free for 30 days. Using it after the trial
period requires a licence to be purchased; this
costs €7.45 and is valid for 6 months.
Summary
F-Secure performed well in our test. The Parental
Control feature and simple navigation made a
good impression. The Safe Browser is also good,
even if support for other browsers would be an
improvement.
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IKARUS mobile.security
IKARUS mobile.security is a neatly designed
security app for Android smartphones. It
includes important security functions such as
a virus scanner, theft protection and URL
filter.
For this, IKARUS has to be defined as the
standard app for telephone calls. Next comes
the
configuration
of
the
anti-theft
component, which the user can switch on or
off. If the feature is to be used, the app has
to be made a device administrator and lock
screen administrator. The user has to define a
password, which must contain at least six
characters, with at least one letter and at
least one number. After this, the user is taken
through a brief introduction to the textmessage commands for the theft-protection
component. The blacklisting function and URL
filter, which protects the user when surfing
the Internet, are configured during the setup
process.
Installation
We downloaded and installed IKARUS
mobile.security from the Google Play store.
The installation process is relatively long, as
it includes configuration of the various
components.
When installation is complete, IKARUS
recommends running an initial malware scan.
Starting the program
When the program is run, the home screen is
shown. The current protection status is
displayed at the top of the screen, the text
reading “Your system is protected” if all is
well. The time of the last malware scan is also
displayed.
The first step is to accept the licence
agreement. IKARUS then runs an update, and
licensing follows. The user can activate the
product using a previously purchased key
(which can be scanned as a QR code), by
making an in-app purchase using Google Play,
or opting for the 30-day test version.
Alternatively, the free version can be
selected, which has restricted functionality.
AntiVirus
IKARUS’ AntiVirus component allows the user
to scan all installed apps, or the complete
system. A scheduled scan can be configured,
with frequency options being twice daily,
daily, every second day or every week. Details
of any infections already discovered can be
displayed.
The protection features then need to be
configured. The USSD protection comes first.
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As with the scans, updates can be carried out
automatically, with the same configuration
options. It is also possible to restrict updates
to times when the device is connected to the
Internet by WiFi (in order to save data
charges), or allow them with any Internet
connection.
Theft Protection
At the bottom of the screen is a checkbox,
activated by default, which allows anonymous
malware recognition data to be sent to
IKARUS‘ labs.
Monitoring
Monitoring is IKARUS‘ term for real-time
protection, which covers new apps, changes
to files and USSD code protection. Each of
these sub-functions can be switched on and
off independently.
IKARUS lists all the available theft-protection
functions and allows each to be deactivated.
The features are controlled by text message, a
web interface is not available.
URL Filter
The URL filter protects the user against
dangerous websites when surfing the
Internet. IKARUS do not state which browsers
are supported; in our test, the protection
worked with both the standard Android
browser and Google Chrome.
If a component is to be disabled, the
password has to be entered. Whilst this is in
principle a good thing, we feel it would be
more practical to protect the entire dialog box
with the password, rather than demanding it
for every checkbox that is unticked.
The phishing test page provided at amtso.org
was not recognised.
Wipe
Text-message command: „wipe: <Password>“
This command deletes all personal data from
the device, in order to prevent it being
accessed by third parties if the phone is lost
or stolen. This is done by resetting the phone
to factory settings. Unfortunately, the process
did not delete the data on the external SD
card, which IKARUS should definitely rectify.
Lock
Text-message command: “lock: <Password>“
As soon as the command is received, the
device is locked with a lock screen, and the
sender receives a confirmation text in reply.
The lock screen is secure and cannot be
bypassed, but emergency calls can still be
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made, which is optimal. A text message is
also sent when the phone is unlocked.
the same configuration steps as during the
installation.
Locate
Text-message
command:
“locate:
<Password>“
When the phone has been successfully
located, the sender receives a text message in
reply, with a link to the appropriate coordinates on Google Maps.
Help & Support
IKARUS assists the user when configuring the
device with short but informative information
boxes. Although the IKARUS website contains
manuals for many other products, we could
not find one for mobile.security. There is an
FAQ with about 20 questions, although these
are rather superficial.
Alarm
Text-message
command:
“alarm:
<Password>“
This command works just like Lock, but plays
a loud siren-like sound too. This works even if
the phone ring settings have been set to
vibrate.
Deinstallation
IKARUS
mobile.security
provides
a
deinstallation wizard to remove the product.
The password has to be entered to use this. A
succinct dialog box is displayed, and then the
program is removed without further ado.
SIM Card Protection
If the mobile phone is stolen and a different
SIM card inserted, the device will be locked
and the thief will be unable to access the
data. The phone can be unlocked by entering
the correct password.
The program can be removed without having
to enter the password, if the Android App
Manager is used. We see this as a serious
security risk, as a thief could easily use this
to completely deactivate the theft protection.
Licence
IKARUS allows users to test mobile.security
free for 30 days. To continue using the
program after this time, the user can buy a
perpetual use licence for €19.95 from the
Google Play store, or a 1-year licence for .00
from the IKARUS website.
Message Blacklisting
Message Blacklisting prevents the receipt of
messages from unwanted senders. The user
interface is very simple, and allows merely the
addition or deletion of numbers. Numbers can
be entered directly, or imported from the
address book or the “Recent Messages” list.
Summary
IKARUS mobile.security has all the important
features of a mobile security suite. USSD
protection and a URL filter are included. The
user interface is very clean and easy to use.
However, the Wipe function and deinstallation
protection need to be improved.
We liked the automatic answer feature, which
sends a customisable message to the sender
when a message is blocked.
Info
This provides version information for the
product. There are also email addresses and
telephone numbers with which the user can
contact IKARUS, and a feature which can send
the system log to support staff.
Restart Setup
This feature requires the password to be reentered. The settings made in the initial
setup are reset, and the user is taken through
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warning message catches the eye, which
informs us that none of our contacts has been
hidden. We find the alert inappropriate, as
many users will have no need to hide any of
their contacts, and this does not represent a
direct security risk. However, the alert can be
hidden in the upcoming version of the
program, according to Kaspersky.
Kaspersky Mobile Security
Kaspersky Mobile Security is a very
comprehensive security app. In addition to a
virus scanner, real-time antivirus protection,
anti-theft and call/text filter, it includes
phishing and privacy protection.
Anti-Virus
The Anti-Virus component can scan the device
for malicious software. The user can start a
scan manually, or set the time and frequency
of automatic scans. Additionally, Kaspersky
monitors the installation of new apps and, if
desired, file operations.
Manual scans can be set to scan the entire
device, just apps, or just a selected folder.
The user can decide whether to scan apps on
installation using the Kaspersky Security
Network (cloud-based malware detection).
Installation
Kaspersky provided us with the APK file and a
licence for the full version. Running the
installer launches a configuration wizard. First
of all, the user has to enter their country of
residence and accept the licence agreement.
The app is then made a system administrator,
in order to enable the anti-theft component.
After this, a Kaspersky account has to be
created; this requires just an email address
and a password, which must be at least 8
characters long and contain uppercase and
lowercase letters and numbers. Finally, the
wizard recommends running a scan. The user
is then taken to the app’s start screen, which
provides access to the individual components.
Privacy Protection
Privacy Protection enables communication
with selected contacts to be hidden. These
can be entered manually or imported from the
address book. Items that can be hidden are
the contact details, text-message log,
received text messages, and call logs.
Starting the program
When the program is started, a well-designed
home screen is shown, which displays all the
components in drop-down menus. A red
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Alarm
Text-message
command:
„alarm:
<Password>“
This command locks the phone and sounds an
alarm. As the screen is simultaneously locked,
the alarm cannot be deactivated, which might
prove very off-putting to a thief.
Anti-Theft
The
Anti-Theft
component
prevents
unauthorised access to the mobile phone if it
is lost or stolen, and assists in finding it
again. The feature can be controlled using the
web interface or text messages (Kaspersky say
this is in case the user’s device does not have
an Internet connection). We note that
commands sent via the web interface are not
carried out immediately, but only via
synchronisation, which takes place every 30
minutes:
Mugshot
This command can only be initiated from the
web interface. The function locks a stolen
device and takes photos of the potential thief
using the front camera; these can be viewed
in the web interface.
Hide
Text-message command: „hide: <Password>“
Sending this command activates the Privacy
Protection component and thus hides all
contacts in the address book.
We feel this is an unacceptable delay in
carrying out the theft-protection commands.
Kaspersky inform us that they hope to rectify
this very soon.
Sub-components of
described below.
the
feature
are
Wipe
Text-message command: wipe: <Password>
This deletes all personal data from the mobile
phone, but without resetting the device to
factory defaults. This has the advantage that
the
theft-protection
software
remains
installed and active. In our test, the browser
history, bookmarks and text-message log were
not deleted. The data on the external SD card
was deleted, but could be restored with a free
data recovery program. Kaspersky have
promised improvement in the next version.
as
Lock & Locate
Text-message command: “find: <Password>”
This command locks the device, and then
determines its position. The user first receives
confirmation that the device has been
successfully locked, and then an SMS with the
current position, in the form of longitude and
latitude co-ordinates. In our opinion, this
form of location information is not very
useful, as these values have to be entered
manually in an online map. A link directly to
the position on such a map would be better.
Full Reset
Text-message
command:
fullreset:
<Password>
This command deletes data on the external SD
card, and then resets the device to factory
settings.
Although
this
completed
successfully, it was still possible to recover
the data from the external SD card.
We were pleased to see that the message
displayed on the lock screen can be edited.
The lock screen itself was very secure and
could not be bypassed. It was always possible
to make an emergency call.
Call & Text Filter
This component allows blacklists and
whitelists to be created, although only one of
these can be active at a time. It is possible to
except individual contacts in the address book
from any blocking features. There is also a
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such, but Kaspersky also offer Kaspersky
Mobile Security Lite, which is available for
free from the Google Play store; its
components
“function
with
some
restrictions”, according to the Kaspersky
website. It can be upgraded to the full
version at any time. However, changes to the
license model are expected soon.
feature for blocking text-message senders
whose telephone numbers include nonnumerical characters. We found the Call &
Text Filter to be logically designed.
Web Protection
This feature only works with the default
Android browser, not with any alternatives.
There is a text anti-phishing component,
which blocks text messages with links to
phishing sites. In our test, this particular
feature did not work, in that text messages
with phishing links were not blocked.
However, as soon as the links were clicked,
they were recognised and blocked by
Kaspersky Web Protection.
Summary
Kaspersky‘s Mobile Security provides many
sensible and well thought-out functions. The
manufacturer has also considered the
ergonomics of the program and created an
intuitive user interface.
The product is not without its problems,
however. It was possible to restore data from
the external SD card after it had been wiped,
and there is a delay of up to 30 minutes after
sending theft-protection commands from the
web interface.
Help
Kaspersky provides its users with a
comprehensive local help service. Tapping the
info-symbol within any dialog of the app
takes the user to the relevant help page. After
installation, tips are shown in every menu,
which we found to be very useful.
Deinstallation
The app can be uninstalled using a wizard.
This requires the password to be entered. If
an attempt is made to uninstall the app
manually, the screen is locked when the user
tries to remove the administrator rights; this
makes it impossible for a thief to disable the
theft protection.
Licence
Kaspersky Mobile Security requires a
commercial licence, which costs €10.95 and is
valid for a year. There is no test version as
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provides access to the program’s functions. A
malware scan is started immediately; for all
other functions, a green tick (checkmark) is
shown, indicating that all is well.
Lookout PREMIUM
Lookout PREMIUM provides the user with
modern security features such as antivirus,
anti-spam, surfing and theft-protection. A
backup function completes the suite.
Security
The Security component of Lookout protects
the user against malware. Under this menu
there is a button to start a scan with, and a
log of previous activity. A message in the top
part of the screen indicates that real-time
protection is active.
Automatic scans can be configured in the
settings. Possible intervals are daily or
weekly, and a preferred time can be set. The
on-demand scan only covers installed apps,
not all files. Lookout tell us that their realtime protection monitors all changes to files
on the device, and so scanning is limited to
installed apps, in order to save battery life.
Backup
The Backup function saves contacts, pictures
and call logs to a Lookout server, whereby
pictures and call logs are only saved by the
Premium version. After the first backup, the
data can be viewed and downloaded in the
web interface. 8
Installation
We downloaded and installed Lookout
PREMIUM from the Google Play store. After
installation, the user can test the PREMIUM
features free for two weeks. After this, a
licence can be purchased, or the program will
automatically downgrade to the free version.
The backup can be run automatically on a
daily or weekly basis. Although we see the
feature as being essentially good and
sensible, we do see a problem with it: it is
not possible to choose which type of Internet
connection to use for the backup (e.g. WiFi).
Somebody who takes a lot of photos will
create a lot of data traffic, which could be
very expensive, especially if the user is
travelling abroad.
There is a brief guide to the scope of the
program, after which the user has to create a
Lookout account (or log in with an existing
one). The product is then configured. The user
can decide whether to activate the Privacy
Advisor, Backup and Safe Browsing features,
whereby the program recommends activating
all of them. After this step, setup is complete.
We liked the fact that the Backup can be run
from the web interface. If the user’s phone is
lost or stolen, they can at least save their
data.
Starting the program
When the program is started, the clearly
designed home screen is shown. The upper
half of this shows activity logs, the lower half
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The theft protection functions are listed and
briefly described at the bottom of the screen.
Scream
This function can be tested directly from the
menu, though of course it would normally be
run from the web interface. It causes a loud
siren to be played on the phone, and the
display to flash red and blue. The phone is
not locked, as it is not a security feature, but
is intended to help find a mislaid phone.
Locate
This component serves to find the phone if it
has been lost or stolen. The user merely has
to log on to the web interface, the position
will be found very quickly and displayed on
Google Maps.
Signal Flare
Signal Flare is a clever feature that locates
the phone before the battery has run down.
The position can be found in the web
interface.
It should be noted that only contacts saved
on the phone itself are backed up. Contacts in
the Google account or saved on the SIM card
are not backed up. Lookout does not make the
user aware of this.
Lockcam
Lockcam is used when the device is locked. If
the wrong password is used three times,
Lookout takes a photo of the thief with the
front camera, and sends it by mail to the
owner.
Missing Device
Missing Device is the theft-protection
component of Lookout. It is controlled by web
interface; there are no text-message
commands. The menu of the same name
displays a map with the current position of
the device. The user can thus easily test the
location function.
Lock
This function allows the user to lock their lost
or stolen phone remotely and so prevent
unauthorised access. This is only available in
the Premium version. To lock the device, the
user logs on to the web interface and clicks
“Lock”; the PIN to unlock the phone can be
defined here. It is possible to display a
message, and even contact details, for
potential honest finders.
Underneath this, there is a button entitled
“Enable Better Protection“. Tapping this
allows the user to make Lookout a device
administrator. The change can be undone in
the settings menu.
The lock screen cannot be bypassed, but an
emergency call can be made.
Wipe
This function is also reserved for users of the
Premium suite. If the Wipe command is sent,
the device will be reset to factory settings.
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Privacy Advisor, Wipe, Lock, restoring data
onto a new device, plus backup of call logs
and photos.
Lookout (like all Android apps) can only wipe
the external SD card if the program has device
administrator rights. We note that the
program does not prompt the user to assign
administrator rights either during installation
or when the program is started.
Summary
Lookout offers a well thought-out security
product, which stands out due to features like
the Lockcam and comprehensive backup
function. The other protection features also
impressed in our test. There is some room for
improvement, however, such as offering users
on-demand scans of the entire SD card or
adding deinstallation protection.
In our test, Lookout deleted all the data on
the SD card, although we were able to recover
this using a common free tool.
Safe Browsing
The Premium feature Safe Browsing protects
the user when surfing the Internet with the
default Android browser and Google Chrome.
It can be deactivated in the settings. It is
also possible to see statistics regarding the
number of scanned sites.
Privacy Advisor
Privacy Advisor, also a Premium feature, finds
apps that might represent a threat to the
user’s privacy. All installed apps are listed
according to their access rights. Categories
include location services, access to contacts
or messages. Tapping a group shows all the
apps with the relevant permission. Tapping
one of the apps shows all other permissions
and detailed information.
Help
Lookout provides a comprehensive FAQ service
online; an active Internet connection is of
course necessary to use this.
Deinstallation
There is no deinstallation wizard provided. If
the app has been made a device
administrator, Lookout advises that this has
to be deactivated before removing the
product. No password is needed to uninstall
the app, enabling a thief to bypass the
protection easily.
Licence
Lookout offers a free version with reduced
functionality. The Premium version can be
purchased for €2.26 a month or €22.66 a
year, and includes the features Safe Browsing,
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Call Block
This prevents the user being disturbed by
unwanted calls. The feature is based on a
blacklist. Any numbers entered in the list will
be blocked. The user can also choose to block
all numbers not in the address book.
Quick Heal Total Security
Quick Heal Total Security is a suite with an
extensive range of features. As well as the
classic functions such as theft protection, the
software also offers components such as a
network monitor and backup feature, which
impressed us in our test.
The user can choose whether or not to be
notified in the event that a call is blocked.
Overall, we found that the feature was very
simple and easy to configure, and it worked
perfectly in our test.
SMS Block
The SMS Block stops unwanted text messages,
in a similar way to the call blocker. However,
it has more comprehensive configuration
options. We were actually confused by the
first option; an “SMS Scan” can be activated,
but there is no further information as to what
this means. We can only imagine that it scans
SMS messages for malicious links. However,
we were unable to provoke such a reaction in
our test.
Installation
We downloaded the installation file from the
manufacturer’s website. After accepting the
licence agreement, the user has to activate
the product. This can be done by entering an
existing key, or purchasing a new one;
alternatively, the software can be tested free
for a limited time.
Quick Heal offers a second protection
mechanism, in the form of a text-spam
blocker. This allows texts from the groups
contacts, non-contacts and senders with nonnumerical addresses to be blocked.
Additionally, blacklists and whitelists can be
created, and individual senders added. There
is also a list of blacklisted keywords –
messages containing any of them will be
blocked. Overall, we felt that the feature does
The theft-protection components are then
configured. A password of between 6 and 20
characters has to be entered. The answers to
two questions have to be registered, in case
the password needs to be reset; users should
of course select questions to which only they
know the answer. A trusted contact is then
entered, to be informed in the event of a SIM
card swap. We were pleased to see that
deinstallation protection can be activated.
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theft-protection software remains installed
and active. Quick Heal did not delete the
browser history or bookmarks in our test. We
were also able to restore the data on the
external SD card using a free tool. The
manufacturers tell us that the newest version
of the product includes a secure deletion
method, which prevents any data being
recovered.
its job, but lacks the very simple
configuration method of the Call Blocker.
Anti-Theft
To configure this feature, the password
entered during installation has to be entered.
The user then has access to a wide range of
configuration options. The theft protection
functions, listed below, are all controlled by
text-message command; there is no web
interface.
Virus Protection
The Virus Protection feature allows the device
to be checked for malware. It is possible to
configure a standard action to be taken when
malware is detected; the options are repair,
delete or skip. This also applies to the realtime protection. In the event of a false
positive, the user can define individual apps
or files as safe.
Locate
Text-message
command:
“TRACE
<Password>”
When the command has been received, a reply
is sent to the sender with link to a page on
Quick Heal’s website, which has a Google
Maps map embedded in it. This shows the
location of the device.
Performance Monitor
The Performance Monitor shows the current
use of resources, such as remaining battery
life, CPU usage and memory usage. A list of
installed apps and their memory usage can
also be shown. Rather annoyingly, this list
can only be ordered alphabetically; to find a
resource-hungry app, the user must scroll
through the whole list.
Block
Text-message
command:
“BLOCK
<Password>”
On receipt of the command, the phone is
locked using a nicely designed lock screen.
This displays a message, which can be freely
edited in advance by the user. The lock screen
is very secure and cannot be bypassed, but
allows emergency calls to be made, and also
enables the trusted number (entered during
setup) to be called.
Network Monitor
The Network Monitor measures data traffic for
2G, 3G and WiFi connections. The user can set
monthly limits and, optionally, cut the
Internet connection if these are exceeded.
Another limit can be set, reaching which
notifies the user. A separate view displays all
the apps that have created Internet traffic,
along with the relevant data usage.
SIM Lock
This locks the device in the event that the
SIM card is changed. It can be switched on or
off. The user can decide whether to send a
message to the trusted number in the event
of a card change. We were pleased to see that
multiple SIM cards can be registered as
trusted, so that users with more than one SIM
can change them over without further ado.
Wipe
Text-message command: “WIPE <Password>”
This function deletes personal data from the
smartphone, in order to prevent unauthorised
access. The device is not reset to factory
settings, which has the advantage that the
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require a password to be entered (although
password protection can be enabled).
Help
A help file is provided to assist users with
questions. This is clearly laid out and easy to
understand. There is also an FAQ, although
this is rather limited, having only about 20
questions.
Deinstallation
Via the context menu > Help > Deactivation it
is possible to deactivate the licence, after
which
the
product
is
automatically
uninstalled. The password has to be entered
to allow this, also if the Android App Manager
is used. There is thus no opportunity for a
thief to bypass the theft protection by
uninstalling the app.
Backup
The backup component creates backup copies
of contacts, calendar entries and text
messages. These are saved on a Quick Heal
server. If the user loses any data from the
phone, it can be restored simply by tapping
the Restore button. It is also possible to set
an automatic backup, which runs at definable
intervals (between daily and monthly).
Licence
Quick Heal Total Security can be purchased
from the Google Play store for €10.76, the
licence being valid for a year. It is possible to
test most features of the product free for 30
days.
Summary
Quick Heal Total Security gives the impression
of being a very mature product with all the
functionality a user could wish for. We did
find the interface rather unintuitive in places,
however, which is perhaps something Quick
Heal could improve.
Backed-up data can be restored to a different
device. In the event that a device is lost, all
the data can be transferred to a new one.
Web Security
The Web Security component protects the user
against phishing sites and sites pushing
malware. Quick Heal also provides parental
controls, which allow parents to block certain
categories of website. We note that this only
works with the standard Android browser, not
with Google Chrome. Trusted sites can be
added to a whitelist, meaning they will never
be blocked. Changing the settings of the
parental control feature did not by default
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real-time protection, which checks newly
installed apps and changes to files.
Sophos Security and Antivirus
Sophos Security and Antivirus is a security
suite with all the important components of a
modern security product, and is available free.
Web Protection
Somewhat hidden in the settings is the Web
Protection function. This protects the user
against malicious websites when surfing the
net. The warning levels are Standard,
Maximum and Never. The feature worked very
well in our test.
Loss & Theft
In the event that the mobile phone is lost,
this feature can play an alarm, lock the
device, locate it, or delete the data from it.
The functions are controlled by text message
only, there is no web interface. The text
messages can only be sent by trusted phone
numbers, which are defined in advance. The
sender has to include the password in the
message. Commands sent from other phones
are ignored, even if the correct password is
included.
We liked the theft-protection’s overview
screen, which shows which components are
active, and which still need to be configured.
Installation
We downloaded and installed Sophos Security
and Antivirus from the Google Play store.
After the installation, the user merely has to
accept the licence agreement, after which the
start page of the app is displayed. An initial
malware scan is run.
Scanner
The scanner searches the mobile phone for
malicious software. In the settings, the user
can decide whether to use cloud features
when scanning; these can be deactivated
when roaming, or set only to be used when
there is a WiFi connection. When malware is
found, the user has the choice of ignoring it,
deleting it, or displaying more information
about it. It is also possible to activate or
deactivate the recognition of potentially
unwanted apps. Additionally, scheduled scans
can be set, with the interval being between
six hours and three days. Sophos also provides
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expected; the files on the SD card could not
be restored using our usual means.
Lock
Text-message command: Lock <Password>
This command locks the mobile phone using
the current Android settings. An icon with a
lock message is also displayed. The lock
screen is very secure and cannot be bypassed.
When the lock command has been successfully
carried out, a reply is sent to the sender.
Alarm
Text-message command: Alarm <Password>
This command locks the screen, just like the
Lock command. Additionally, an alarm sound
is played, which could be very off-putting for
a thief.
Locate
Text-message command: Locate <Password>
When the command has been received, the
device will attempt to locate its position
using GPS and WiFi. When this has been
achieved, the sender will receive a reply with
the approximate co-ordinates and a link to
the location on Google Maps; this is followed
later by another message with more precise
co-ordinates.
SIM Change
If the SIM card is swapped, a message with
the IMEI and IMSI will be sent to all the
trusted phone numbers. The device will also
be locked using the Android lock screen.
Spam Protection
Spam Protection prevents the user being
bothered by unwanted calls or texts. It is
possible to switch either sub-component on or
off completely, i.e. to use just call blocking or
just text blocking. However, it is not possible
to separate them for a particular contact; i.e.
either both calls and texts are blocked, or
neither. An intuitive menu allows numbers to
be added to the blacklist and whitelist. If a
number should accidentally be added to both
lists, the whitelist has priority.
Locate at Low Battery
If this function is activated, the phone will be
located whenever the battery runs low; the
details will be sent to the trusted phone
numbers.
Unlock
Text-message command: Unlock <Password>
This command defines a new, randomly
chosen password for the device. The sender
receives a text message containing the new
password.
There are also options for blocking anonymous
calls and texts, and any number not in the
address book.
Wipe
Text-message command: Wipe <Password>
Sophos has gone to a lot of trouble with the
wipe command. The user can define the type
of wipe to be used for individual file types. In
addition to simple deletion, files can be
overwritten with junk (secure wipe). This
means that the process will take longer. In
our test, the secure wipe functioned as
If the text-blocking function is active, Sophos
can protect against malicious URLs in text
messages. This worked well in our test,
although we noticed that texts with malicious
URLs were also blocked when the textblocking function was deactivated, although
Sophos inform us that this has been rectified
in the latest version.
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Antivirus Guard, which ensures that the
security suite cannot be terminated.
The blocked text messages can be found in
Quarantine, where they can be viewed,
restored, or deleted.
The configurable parameter Grace Period
defines how long the app can be used before
being locked again. Two minutes is the
default.
Privacy Advisor
The Privacy Advisor lists apps that may
present a risk to the user’s privacy. Sophos
categorises the apps according to threat level
(high, medium and low), and marks them red,
yellow or white in the list. The user can filter
them according to the following categories:
apps that incur costs, have access to personal
information, or can access the Internet.
As self-protection, Sophos protects itself and
the Android settings with a password; this
cannot be deactivated. Additional apps can be
protected with the same password.
Help
Sophos provides the user with comprehensive
help in the form of info-boxes for every
component. We find this entirely adequate,
but would like to see more assistance for the
deinstallation process.
Security Advisor
The Security Advisor makes the user aware of
any settings on the mobile phone that may
represent a risk to security. Sophos checks six
different settings, such as whether a screen
lock or device encryption is active. Clicking on
one of the entries displays information, and a
button that leads directly to the relevant
Android settings page.
Deinstallation
There is no uninstall wizard. Security Advisor
has a message stating that the program must
be removed from the device administrators
before it can be uninstalled. Once this has
been done, the app can be uninstalled using
the Android App Manager.
Neither the removal of device administrator
privileges nor the subsequent removal of the
program required the password to be entered.
A thief could thus easily deactivate the theft
protection. We understand that if the App
Protection feature is activated, AND the
separate Sophos Security and Antivirus Guard
app has been installed, that deinstallation
without password entry is then prevented. We
feel this is a complicated procedure for
protecting
against
unauthorised
deinstallation.
App Protection
This component makes it possible to
password-protect apps with a four-character
password. When this has been set, a warning
appears that the App Protection can be
bypassed by using the Task Manager.
However, Sophos provide a solution in the
form of another app, Sophos Security and
Licence
Sophos Security and Antivirus is free and
without restriction for private use.
Summary
Sophos Security & Antivirus offers all the
functions of a modern security suite and is
free. The app gives the impression of being
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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mature and well balanced. We note there has
been an obvious extension of the
functionality compared to the version in last
year’s report.
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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button for scanning the device immediately,
plus a variety of configuration options, such
as whether to use cloud scanning or scan the
SD card. Updates can be carried out
immediately and/or automated. In the latter
case, the interval can be daily, weekly or
monthly. It is also possible to set the app to
only update when the device is connected to
the Internet by WiFi. As an option, a scan can
be run after every update. Scanning and
update events are listed in a log.
Trend Micro Mobile Security
Mobile Security by Trend Micro provides
important protection functions such as theft
protection and antivirus, along with safe
surfing and parental control.
Data Theft Scanner
The Data Theft Scanner checks the apps
installed on the device for possible threats
relating to the theft of private data. Trend
Micro also provides a real-time scan for this
component, which checks newly installed apps
for such risks.
The Data Theft Scanner is not very aggressive
in its operation. Apps such as Facebook,
which due to their privileges have great
potential to steal personal information, are
not listed as a risk.
Installation
We downloaded and installed Trend Micro
Mobile Security from the Google Play store.
The start screen is shown as soon as the
licence agreement has been accepted.
Safe Surfing and Parental Control
This feature combines two Internet-related
protection functions. Safe Surfing protects
the user whilst surfing the Internet, whereby
the security levels High, Medium or Low can
be selected. The High level blocks websites
with the slightest possible risk, whilst Low is
less strict and ignores minor threats.
Starting the program
The user is shown a short introduction to the
program and its interface, e.g. swiping to the
right to open the controls for extended
functions. A message box indicates that the
user should create a Trend Micro account, or
log on with an existing one.
For Parental Control, a password of at least 8
characters has to be defined. Suitable
protection for internet-surfing children can
then be defined. This can be varied according
to the age of the child, and specific websites
can be blocked or allowed using a blacklist or
whitelist respectively.
On the start screen are buttons for the
Malware Scanner, Data Theft Scanner, Backup
and Anti-Theft. The static “Scan Device”
button is very striking, as it remains
permanently visible in the Home Screen view.
The Uninstall Protection prevents a child or
adolescent from simply uninstalling the app.
We feel that this should not be limited to
child protection, and that a global
Virus Scanner
Clicking the Virus Scanner button takes the
user to the appropriate page. This also has a
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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deinstallation protection would make more
sense.
text messages, an automatic reply can be
defined.
The deinstallation protection did not function
adequately in our test. Whilst the phone was
blocked after the device administrator
function had been removed, when the device
was rebooted, it was fully accessible for about
60 seconds. The app can easily be uninstalled
without entering a password during this time.
However, Trend Micro tell us that this will be
improved in the next release.
For text messages, it is possible to create a
list of keywords; any messages containing one
of these words will be blocked.
The Call & Text Blocking feature also creates
logs, which enable the user to see which calls
and texts have been stopped.
Lost Device Protection
Lost Device Protection is Trend Micro’s theftprotection feature. The protection functions,
such as locating, locking and wiping are
provided. The feature is controlled by a web
interface; there are no text-message
commands.
In our test, before we were able to send any
command (such as Lock), there was
sometimes a significant delay while the
system attempted to locate the phone.
It is quite possible for the phone to be in a
location where it can connect to a mobile
network, but location is slow or impossible. In
such cases, it makes no sense to us that e.g.
a Lock command can only be sent when the
phone’s location has been fixed.
Changing any of the settings in Lost Device
Protection requires the password to be
entered, so that a thief cannot simply
deactivate the theft protection.
There is a log within the Safe Surfing and
Parental Control feature that shows all
websites that have been blocked; this
includes both websites defined as threats, and
websites unsuitable for children.
Locate
The Locate function shows the position of a
lost or stolen phone in Google Maps. The
action is carried out automatically when the
web interface is opened.
Call & Text Blocking
Trend Micro provides the ability to block
unwanted calls and text messages. Calls and
texts can be blocked and configured
separately. For each communication type, the
use of a blacklist or a whitelist can be set,
along with the action to be taken when an
item is blocked. For example, in the case of
SIM Card Lock
This locks the device when the SIM card is
removed or swapped. The SIM Lock feature
took a long time to work in our test. Once the
device had been restarted, we were able to
use it normally for about 60 seconds before
the lock was applied.
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Lock
This function locks the device, thus making it
unusable for third parties. It can only be
unlocked by entering the correct password.
When the phone is locked, emergency calls
can still be made, and a new password (to be
sent by email) can be requested.
Help
The user is provided with a comprehensive
help function, with a great deal of useful
information. Additionally, information boxes
can be shown for each component, to help
the user with the item’s configuration.
Deinstallation
It is possible to remove the app from the list
of device administrators, although the device
will be locked immediately afterwards. If the
phone is restarted, the lock is not reactivated
for some time, allowing a thief to uninstall
the theft protection/parental control features.
Licence
The basic version of Trend Micro Mobile
Security is free. For the Premium version with
Safe Surfing, Parental Control, Locate, Lock,
Wipe, SIM Lock and deinstallation protection,
a licence has to be purchased. This costs
€19.95 and is valid for one year. The Premium
functions can be tested free for 30 days.
However, it is also possible to open the
Android Notification Bar, change settings and
look at messages. Also, pressing and holding
the Home button displays the list of recent
apps, which could be a privacy threat.
However, Trend Micro inform us that these
problems will be rectified in the next release.
Summary
Trend Micro provides a security solution for
Android with a wide range of functions. The
Parental Control feature, amongst others,
impressed us in our test. The theft protection
includes all the functions to be expected of a
modern security program, but still has
definite room for improvement.
Siren
This command plays a loud alarm sound; the
device is not locked, so it serves only to find
the phone if it has been mislaid.
Wipe
Trend Micro offers two variants of Wipe.
Partial Remote Wipe removes personal data
from the device, while Full Remote Wipe
additionally resets the device to factory
settings.
In our test, Wipe largely functioned well,
although we were able to restore the data on
the SD card using popular free data-recovery
tools.
Backup & Restore, Scan Facebook
Whilst both of these functions can be found
in Trend Micro Mobile Security’s menus, they
are in fact both independent apps. Clicking
either item takes the user to the Google Play
store, from where they can be installed.
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Webroot SecureAnywhere
The Shields setting allows four different realtime protection functions to be activated:
installation, file system, app execution, and
diallers:
Webroot’s SecureAnywhere is a balanced
security product that is available free. For
users with more extensive requirements, the
Premium version can be purchased; this
provides an even more comprehensive set of
features.
There is additionally an automatic malware
scan, which can be run hourly, daily or
weekly. The same intervals can be applied to
automatic updates, which can also be run
manually. We note that the product does not
recognise the EICAR test file as malware.
In our battery usage test, we noticed an
increase of 6% when SecureAnywhere is
installed, largely attributable to the Execution
Shield. We would suggest that the developers
should try to improve this.
Installation
We downloaded and installed SecureAnywhere
from the Google Play store. After accepting
the licence agreement, the user must either
create a new Webroot account, or log in to an
existing one. The password must have at least
six characters. Setup is completed by
registering the app as a device administrator.
Secure Web Browsing
Secure Web Browsing protects the user while
surfing the Internet. If a website is blocked
by the software, users have the option of
classifying it as safe if they feel it has been
wrongly classified. The site will then be
allowed in future. In our test, phishing sites
were only blocked when using the standard
Android browser; the manufacturers say that
the upcoming version 3.4 will also support
Chrome.
Starting the Program
When the program was first started, a yellow
warning message appeared, indicating that we
had not activated the Android lock screen.
When we had rectified this, the display turned
green, indicating that the device was
protected. A virus scan was run automatically.
Lost Device Protection
The theft-protection component can be
controlled using text messages or a web
interface. The latter is well designed and
intuitive to use, and allows multiple devices
Anti-Virus
The Anti-Virus component of SecureAnywhere
protects the user against malicious software.
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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is wiped, and the device is then reset to
factor settings. In our test, files on the
external SD card were not deleted. Webroot
say that they are considering introducing an
SD-card wipe feature in a future release.
to be administered. For each device,
protection status and logs of e.g. malware can
be seen.
If the user locates a device through this
interface, no further commands can be carried
out until the location has been successfully
completed.
Locate
Text-message
command:
“Locate
<Password>”
This function allows a lost or stolen phone to
be found. If the command is sent from the
web interface, the position of the phone will
be shown in a Google Maps map. While the
position is being determined, no other
commands can be given, which is rather
problematic if the location process takes some
time. Webroot inform us that they may enable
command queuing in a later release.
If the command is sent by text message, a
message will be received in reply which
contains a link to the relevant location in
Google Maps.
Scream
Text-message
command:
“scream
<Password>”
This function causes a shrill alarm to sound,
without locking the device. It thus serves to
locate a mislaid device at home, rather than
being a security feature. Once started, the
sound cannot be stopped; the user has to wait
two minutes until the feature switches itself
off.
SIM Lock
This feature is also only available in the
Premium version. If the trusted SIM card is
removed, the device will be locked. A thief
thus cannot use the device with their own
SIM card.
Call & SMS Blocking
This component prevents unwanted calls and
texts being received, using the blacklisting
principle. The user can add known
troublemakers to the list, meaning they will
be unable to make contact by calling or
texting the phone. It is also possible to block
anonymous calls, i.e. calls from callers who do
not display their own number. Webroot
additionally provides protection against text
messages with links to malicious sites; this
worked perfectly in our tests.
Lock
Text-message command: “lock <Password>”
This function locks the device, to prevent it
being accessed by third parties. The Android
lock screen, which is very secure and cannot
be bypassed, is used in the background.
However, Webroot’s own lock screen is used as
an overlay. This displays a message (which
can be customised in the web interface) for
potential honest finders.
Wipe
Text-message command: “Wipe <Password>”
This function is only available in the Premium
version. When the command has been
received, the device is locked, personal data
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Network Monitor
The Network Monitor shows apps that use the
network. The protocol used, local and remote
IP addresses and ports, and the status are all
shown. Tapping an entry carries out a who-is
query for the remote IP address, and shows
details such as ISP and approximate location.
Help
Webroot provides users with a comprehensive
online help feature, which of course requires
an active Internet connection. We found the
scope and detail of the help service to be
adequate. Within the app itself are mini
information-texts for each menu entry, which
we found very useful.
Texts and calls that have been blocked are
clearly displayed in a list. This shows not only
the date, but also the content of text
messages, and the reason the text/call was
blocked.
Deinstallation
Deinstallation can be carried out with a single
click using the uninstall wizard provided. In
the free version, no password is needed,
making it easy for a thief to deactivate the
theft protection. However, in the Premium
version, a deinstallation mechanism requires
the password to be entered before the
program can be uninstalled.
App Inspector
The App Inspector checks installed apps for
privacy risks. An example would be apps that
can access messaging or location functions.
Apps with high battery usage are also listed.
Licence
Webroot SecureAnywhere can be used free and
without
restriction
in
its
reducedfunctionality version. A licence for the
Premium
version,
which
includes
deinstallation protection, SIM lock and
various App Inspectors, can be purchased for
€15.75 and is valid for a year.
Battery Monitor
The Battery Monitor provides detailed
information about the battery. Charge status
and temperature are shown, along with
battery-hungry apps. This is displayed visually
in the form of a bar chart (please note that
the relatively high battery consumption by
Webroot itself might be due to our testing its
features):
Summary
Webroot’s SecureAnywhere performed well in
our test. Even the free version provides
reliable theft protection and various filters.
The deinstallation protection, SIM lock and
app inspectors make the Premium version
attractive. However, some areas of the theft
protection could be improved, and an
extension of the phishing protection would be
desirable.
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Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
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Conclusion
For some people, smartphones have already become a replacement for a PC. Others save personal
and professional information, which may be of great interest for thieves. Phishing is a potential
form of attack that affects users of any device with access to the Internet. Saving credit card details
in various shopping apps, especially the Google Play store, can lead to high costs being incurred,
either through malware or through unauthorised access. The same applies to the mobile phone
contract.
The potential for attacks is great, especially in the case of an open operating system such as
Android, which gives the developers of harmless apps a wide range of opportunities. Unfortunately,
the programmers of malicious software have exactly the same opportunities, which they abuse.
Mobile security software protects the user against the great majority of such threats, and should
not, in our opinion, be regarded as merely optional. Nonetheless, many users do not employ such
protection, and are at risk. We find this hard to understand, as there is a wide range of software,
including free products, that provide a high level of security. The argument that security products
affect the performance or battery life of smartphones has very largely been disproved in our test.
-51-
Feature List Android Mobile Security (as of August 2013)
Product name:
Supported OS versions:
Supported Program languages:
Anti‐Spam Features
Whitelist/Blacklist SMS
Whitelist/Blacklist calls
General blocking of known/unknown contacts and hidden numbers
Whitelist/Blacklist MMS
Block known SMS/MMS spam
Block known call spam
White‐ and Blacklisting with wildcards
Parental Control
Lock apps
Block Phone calls, email, SMS/MMS, Web‐Browsing, apps between specified hours
Make the device call you back so you can hear what's happening around it
Authentication
Lock Screen with Password protection
Password policy: Strength, length, etc.
Maximum number of failed attempts and/or grace period
Access control
Anti‐Malware
On Demand Scan (Full system scan)
Automatic Update
Real Time File protection
Prevent access to harmful (e.g. phishing) web sites
Scheduled Scan
Application Audit / Security info about installed apps
On Demand Scan (scan of specified folders, SD card)
USSD Blocking
Cloud Scanning (requires cloud connection)
SMS/MMS Scanner
Different Update profiles
Central Managed updates
Own roaming update profile
Network protection
Quarantine Anti‐Theft
Remote localization (GPS)
Remote localization (Network)
Remote Wipe and Remote Lock
Remote alarm
SMS for controlling Anti‐Theft components
Webinterface for controlling Anti‐Theft components
Possibility to make emergency calls while locked
Lock phone on SIM change
Report thief's phone number
Remote unlock
Track location (automatic locating in timewindow)
Remote configuration
Lock Contacts, SMS/MMS
Remote updates
Possibility to receive calls while locked
Report thief's location at SIM change
Lock Images/Files
Backup
Backup (online / memory card)
Backup of contacts
Backup Call History
Scheduled data backup
Backup of SMS/MMS and user data
Backup Pictures/Multimedia
Support
Email support
User Forum
Online Help
Phone Support
Online Help (special URL designed for browsing with the phone)
User manual
Online Chat
Supported languages (of support)
FREE
FREE
COMMERCIAL
FREE
COMMERCIAL
COMMERCIAL
COMMERCIAL
COMMERCIAL
FREE
FREE
COMMERCIAL
FREE
COMMERCIAL
FREE
FREE
AhnLab V3 Mobile
avast! Free Mobile Security
avast! Premium Mobile Security
Baidu Security Guard
Bitdefender Mobile Security
ESET Mobile Security
F‐Secure Mobile Security
IKARUS mobile.security
Kaspersky Mobile Security
Kingsoft Mobile Security
Lookout
Lookout Premium
Qihoo 360 MobileSafe
Quick Heal Total Security
Sophos Mobile Security
Tencent Mobile Security Manager
Android 2.2 and higher
Android 2.2 and higher
Android 2.2 and higher
Android 2.2 and higher
Android 2.2 and higher
Android 2.2 and higher
Android 2.2 and higher
Android 2.1 and higher
Android 2.2 and higher
Android 2.1 and higher
Android 2.3 and higher
Android 2.1 and higher
German, English, Italian, Spanish, French, Chinese, Russian
English, Russian, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese
Chinese
English, French, Spanish, German, Japanese, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Korean, Chinese
Chinese, English
English
English, German, French, Japanese, Italian, Chinese
Chinese
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Android 2.0 and higher
English, Korean
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Android 2.1 and higher
Belarusian, Russian, Catalan, Czech, German, English, Spanish, French, Italian, Hungarian, Dutch, Polish, Portuguese, Turkish, Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, Korean
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Chinese
FREE
COMMERCIAL
English, Bulgarian, Chinese, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, English, Polish, Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, German, Greek, Japanese, Russian, Hungarian, Spanish, English, French, Hungarian, German, Portuguese, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Indonesian, Italian, Romanian, Turkish, Swedish, Chinese, Spanish, Romanian, Japanese, Korean, Italian, French, Korean, Czech, Hebrew, Polish, Portuguese
Malay, Norwegian, Slovak, Vietnamese, Arabic, Bulgarian, Thai
Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Tagalog, Thai, Turkish
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English, Korean
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Account (not device) based licensing ‐ same license for multiple devices if same owner
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PW protection of uninstallation
Central Management
Data network usage monitor
Battery Monitor
Updates thru PC
Offline activation Task Killer
Several trusted SIM cards
Local wipe
Storage Monitor
Price (may vary)
Price 1 phone / 1 year (USD/EUR)
Price 4 phones / 2 years (USD/EUR)
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English, German, Romanian, Italian, French, Portuguese, Spanish
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English, Finnish, French, Dutch, Danish, German, Chinese, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Swedish
All
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German, English
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English, Russian, French, German, Spanish, Polish, Japanese
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Chinese
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English, French, Spanish, German, Japanese, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Korean, Chinese
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Chinese
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USD 15 / 10 EUR
USD 120 / 80 EUR
FREE
FREE
USD 10 / 8 EUR
USD 80 / 60 EUR
FREE
FREE
USD 15 / 10 EUR
USD 120 / 80 EUR
USD 20 / 15 EUR
USD 160 / 120 EUR
USD 12 / 9 EUR
USD 68 / 62 EUR
USD 15 / 10 EUR
USD 120 / 80 EUR
FREE
FREE
FREE
FREE
USD 30 / 23 EUR
USD 90 / 68 EUR
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FREE
FREE
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English, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Russian, Portuguese, Turkish
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USD 12 / 10 EUR
USD 95 / 80 EUR
FREE
FREE
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All
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FREE
FREE
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Chinese
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English, German, French, Japanese, Italian, Chinese
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English, Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Malyalam
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FREE
FREE
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English, German, Czech, Polish, Russian, French, Chinese, Japanese, Turkish, Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic
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Additional features
Password protection for settings
No SIM activation
Statistics 
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English, Japanese, English, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Chinese, Dutch, Vietnamese, French, German, French, German, Italian, Italian, Korean, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, Spanish, Russian, Portuguese, Turkish, Russian
Turkish
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COMMERCIAL
COMMERCIAL
Trend Micro Mobile Webroot Security & Security Personal Antivirus
Edition for Android
Android 2.2 and Android 2.2 and higher
higher
FREE
FREE
USD 30 / 25 EUR
USD 200 / 180 EUR
USD 20 / 26 EUR
USD 160 / 120 EUR
Product Review: Mobile Security ‐ July 2013
www.av-comparatives.org
Copyright and Disclaimer
This publication is Copyright © 2013 by AV-Comparatives e.V. ®. Any use of the results, etc. in whole
or in part, is ONLY permitted after the explicit written agreement of the management board of AVComparatives e.V., prior to any publication. AV-Comparatives e.V. and its testers cannot be held
liable for any damage or loss which might occur as result of, or in connection with, the use of the
information provided in this paper. We take every possible care to ensure the correctness of the
basic data, but a liability for the correctness of the test results cannot be taken by any
representative of AV-Comparatives e.V. We do not give any guarantee of the correctness,
completeness, or suitability for a specific purpose of any of the information/content provided at any
given time. No one else involved in creating, producing or delivering test results shall be liable for
any indirect, special or consequential damage, or loss of profits, arising out of, or related to, the
use or inability to use, the services provided by the website, test documents or any related data. AVComparatives e.V. is a registered Austrian Non-Profit-Organization.
For more information about AV-Comparatives and the testing methodologies please visit our website.
AV-Comparatives e.V. (August 2013)
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