SMobile Releases Antivirus To Protect Google Android Phones
- By Dian Schaffhauser
SMobile Systems has released an antivirus program for phones running Android, the Google-developed operating system. The company already offers similar solutions for BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Symbian, Palm, and iPhone devices.
SMobile VirusGuard for Android will allow users to scan their devices and memory cards for 400 known instances and variants of mobile malware. These viruses, worms, and Trojans can infect and cross-over between mobile devices via the memory card. New malware can infect devices via the Web-browser, memory card, and the installation of malicious open source applications.
"Android's open-source architecture is fantastic because it allows anyone to develop new applications for the phones running on this system. For SMobile, we believe that creating a virus protection solution is necessary to help thwart the potential for malware attacks that are coming and those that exist today," said Neil Book, president of SMobile. "It is our mission to keep users informed of threats we detect and to protect consumer and business users from the very real dangers that await a potentially exploitable device like the new [T-Mobile] G1."
"Days after the release of Android, the first exploit became public." said Daniel V. Hoffman, SMobile CTO. "VirusGuard allows users to react quickly to new malware-related threats and to protect their devices without having to wait days or weeks for an operating system update."
In a statement the company said it plans to adapt the remainder of its SecurityShield suite to offer firewall, anti-spam and lock, wipe, and backup for the Android platform. SMobile is also developing parental controls that will allow parents to monitor their child's cell phone voice and messaging activities.
The company is selling its software directly; but starting in the first quarter of 2009, it expects to sell the applications in the Google Android Market.
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @schaffhauser.