Flushing out the bad guys...
Here’s how it goes: new OS comes out, new OS become popular, new OS is targeted by unscrupulous coders. Which is around the time that anti-virus companies begin to rub their hands together and see pound signs.
You’ll be glad to know that Trend Micro hasn’t seen too many pound signs, however, since Mobile Security weighs in at around £2.50 ($3.99) for a year’s subscription. And the features list doesn’t just include anti-virus, either. Mobile Security also sports parental browsing controls and the ability to screen calls, texts and block undesirable websites, making it perfect not only for the security conscious, but also those who want to keep their kids from viewing certain sites or even receiving certain types of calls.
After parting with your $3.99, it’s a refreshingly brief download before Mobile Security is ready to go. You’ll be asked to set up a password to make changes to the phone’s security setup and then it takes a matter of minutes to configure your settings and from then on it’ll just chug along in the background. Life of Android has heard a few murmurs of heavy processor usage, but we tried it on a creaky, workhorse HTC Legend and haven’t noticed any significant slowdown, so we’ll have to assume these reports are bogus.
Trend’s anti-malware can be set to protect your Android device in real-time, keeping a beady eye on any new software you install as and when you install it, as well as allowing a manual scan at the press of a button.
Parental settings allow you to block certain sites, allow from a list of sites only, or use a slider to control allowed sites from those with violent and pornographic imagery, to sites with content unsuitable for children under 13. Which, incidentally, are most likely sites with violet and pornographic imagery, but that’s a side issue.
Then, as if that wasn’t plenty for your £2.50, there’s the call and message filtering side of Mobile Security. You can set up a list of blocked numbers, or go from one extreme to the other and set up a list of specific numbers that are allowed to get through. There’s also an option to block nuisance callers and messagers with preset and user-definable text responses for both.
The anti-malware side of Mobile Security is only a small part of the story and, until we’re hearing daily reports of new virus attacks, will hopefully remain so. What Trend’s offering does do, though, is deliver a genuinely slick, simple solution to the problem of nuisance callers and texts and the issue of unfettered web access for kids. And as such, we’re big fans.
The bottom line
Anti-malware that comes with call, text and web screening into the bargain
Version tested: 1.2 (all Android versions)