Being a Toshiba Thrive Tablet owner, with the Android OS, one of my main concerns is malware. Basically, everything I have explored (in terms of security software), I have little confidence in, or it slows down the tablet to a crawl, or it sucks the life out the battery. You have to keep in mind, these tablet devices (and smartphones) are really in the beginning cycle of life and that the antivirus, antispyware and antimalware protection being offered for these devices are also in the beginning cycle of life. As a result, the potential threat of an infection, in my opinion, is high. Let’s face it, these devices are designed to be cloud (or web) based and in today’s world the viral threats we are exposed to are predominantly also web based. In essence, click on a bad link and your tablet (or smartphone) could go south real quick. Then on the flip side of all of this, I have found on the internet that threats to the Android OS is virtually impossible (which to me any OS platform is susceptible). The incentive for attackers to take advantage of all of these shortcomings is on the rise. In the meantime I continue to educate myself to what is necessary and what is not.
Another factor here with tablets and smartphones is that the amount of personal information being stored on these devices is phenomenal. Lose the tablet (or smartphone) and bye, bye personal information and access to all your online accounts. Most people, including myself, due to the lack of a “typical” keyboard, and for the matter of convenience, will have our tablets (or smartphones) set to automatically remember our passwords so that we do not have to type them in (one reason to have the device locked and password protected).
During my search for some type of protection on my Toshiba, I came across an app called Lookout Mobile Security that claims to provide protection for malware, including trojans, worms, spyware and other suspicious software; and, claims to scan all apps, including inner directories and files – and also scans devices for any files that are capable of being executed on the particular device.
Lookout Mobile Security is available as a paid app or a FREE app that has limited functionality. From what I am seeing on my Android (Toshiba Thrive) tablet is that the Lookout FREE version is giving me a Security Protection feature, a Backup feature and a Missing Device feature.
The Security feature, as mentioned before, claims to provide protection for malware, including trojans, worms, spyware and other suspicious software.
The Backup feature allows you to backup your contacts, call history and pictures to a myLookout.com account. (This feature I opted out on).
The Missing Device feature is a really cool feature that can be used locate your device, on a Google Map, from a myLookout.com account. I tested this feature out and it located my tablet within a couple of minutes. I was then sent an email with a Google map that displayed the location of my Toshiba Thrive (plus the longitude and latitude). You can even remotely activate an alarm on the device from the account. If you upgrade to the Premium paid version, once you locate your missing device, you can remotely, over the web, wipe the data from it.
So far, with more testing ahead, Lookout Mobile Security has been tablet friendly with no noticeable degradation in performance. I am still watching the battery levels to determine if it is taking away from the battery life during a session of using the tablet.
I still have more testing to perform with this; however, I thought I would throw all of this out there in chance it may help someone else out there who owns an iPhone, iPad, Android Tablet or Android Smartphone.
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