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View Poll Results: AV on a smartphone - is it a:
Smart choice 3 60.00%
Waste of money 0 0%
Not sure 2 40.00%
Voters: 5. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 7th March, 2011, 02:59 PM
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Antivirus for Smartphones?

Something I've been thinking about a bit is smartphones and malware. Smartphones look like the PC world about 10-15 years ago in many ways, just with different players. On top of that, we've seen 50 applications pulled from Google's Android Market. So what do you think about antivirus running on a smartphone? Is it worth putting antivirus on a smartphone, or is it all just a bit of hype to sell software?
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Old 7th March, 2011, 03:25 PM
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Was using F-secure on my N97 till it expired. Any advice on a free AV Aedan?
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Old 7th March, 2011, 10:32 PM
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I think that, from the standpoint of Android phones and the Google Android App Market, if Google can't run a flippin' virus/trojan scan on the apps that are uploaded to the store, then Android is ultimately doomed. I mean, we manage to run scans with TWO DIFFERENT AV scanners on stuff that's uploaded to AOAFiles, and Google have FAR more resources to work with than we do.

As for running AV software on the phone itself, I expect that's going to become almost a necessity as smartphones become both more ubiquitous and more powerful.
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Old 7th March, 2011, 11:05 PM
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Those computers in your sig still working Chris? Think it's time for a new sig. Anyone of you knows whats Pitch doing these days?
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Old 8th March, 2011, 10:59 AM
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Well, as far as the malware uploaded to the Android Marketplace, I'm not seeing PC AV software picking up the exploits either - I've double checked with publically available binaries of psneuter and rageagainstthecage.
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Old 8th March, 2011, 09:06 PM
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Fair enough, but Google haven't indicated that they DO in fact perform ANY sort of vetting of apps uploaded to the Android App Market.

I understand that from Google's standpoint, the App Market is a resource sink for them: they don't charge anyone anything to submit an app, they don't get any money from an app that is downloaded, they don't (AFAIK) get a cut of any app that is sold. However, running a flippin' scanner is something that can be easily automated, and someone can screen the rejects for validity (which should be a very small handful on any given day). Again, AOA manages to do exactly what I described above, and we have far less to work with in the way of resources.

Will such an approach catch every possible attack? No. As you well know, EVERY system is subject to zero-day attacks (attacks for which there are no known defences).

Ultimately, the only way to truly fix this problem is to fix the attack vectors themselves. However, since software is coded by human beings, the likelihood of fixing every possible vector seems to be vanishingly small. Obviously, as long as it is possible for a user to root their phone, it's going to be possible for an attacker to do the same.
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Old 15th March, 2011, 03:49 PM
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Doing a bit of research on some AV products, and it appears there's large areas of Android that they don't actually scan. That seems to mean an app that downloads malicious code can get away without beeing seen on at least one product I've seen!
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Old 16th March, 2011, 05:17 PM
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I have used AVG from the Android market. Seems to work ok.
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Old 17th March, 2011, 09:38 PM
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I don't suppose that Google would generate a lot of goodwill by AVing their apps?
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Old 18th March, 2011, 09:48 PM
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If a shop gave me free food, and it made me sick, I think they would have to carry the responsibility, even if it was free.

Same should apply to Google, and their app service. They can afford to do more.
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Old 21st March, 2011, 04:03 PM
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Poor analogy - malware on your smartphone is unlikely to kill you in nasty ways. Food can.
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Old 6th July, 2011, 02:37 PM
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I have installed AVG free version, and activated the lost phone stuff.

Can lock, and locate the phone from a web browser.
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