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Antivirus prevention isn’t anywhere near as necessary for Android devices as it is for Windows computers just yet. As Android’s market share grows, though, so will the attacks. More importantly for the here and now, Lookout Mobile Security provides key security options that are unique to the mobile market. Along with the antivirus and anti-malware tech, there’s a lost and stolen phone locator service, an application privacy adviser, and a backup service.

Lookout’s installation is smooth and simple. The free account registration requires a valid e-mail address, which is important because several of the app’s features require communication with the user.
As a security app, it’s not surprising that Lookout will grab with some fairly deep hooks into your Android device. Lookout has permission rights to your personal information, messages, location, network communication, accounts, storage, phone calls, hardware controls, and system tools.
Lookout’s interface is helpfully simple to navigate. At the top right of the app, a status notification tells you if you’ve got security problems or if, “Everything is OK.” Below that, the four main features are presented as buttons. Tap one to reveal a button that will run the feature, if it’s the Security scan, the Privacy scan, or the Backup.
The Missing Phone option is less intuitive. It merely tells you to go to to locate, lock, scream, or wipe your phone. The scream option sets off a high-pitched alarm to annoy phone thieves and alert others. Of course, you’re not going to require any of those options if you know where your phone is. But it’s a good reminder that the feature is there, even if it’s only for Web use.
You can access Lookout from the app or a notification bar icon that also informs you of your status. The Settings hardware button reveals a reasonable although not robust selection of options to configure, presented in the standard and familiar Android style.

Features and support
Lookout’s features are robust and comprehensive, at least for what’s known about the still-developing field of mobile security.
It’s difficult at the moment to verify whether the antivirus and anti-malware feature actually does anything, since there are few if any labs that test mobile antivirus and anti-malware apps. At this point, we know it’s there, and we know that Lookout says it does proactive things to keep you from getting infected. Those infections are not something you’re likely to come across, so we’ll just acknowledge the feature and file it under “incomplete.”
Lookout has provided reviewers with access to a demo malicious app, which gets blocked by Lookout when you attempt to install it. Though the app worked in that instance, that kind of test is hardly verifiable. However, Android-based threats do exists and as they occur with more frequency, it’s highly likely that standards for testing security apps will emerge.
The other security features in the app are quite effective. Most notable among them is the phone tracker, which uses your GPS to track your phone’s location. Again, if it’s been lost or stolen, you can log in to to find your phone. From its online interface, you can also set off the screaming alarm designed to annoy your phone’s thief enough to abandon it, as well as remotely wipe or lock the phone.
The MyLookout site is also where you can initiate a backup and restore, run a security scan, and toggle settings, although those features can be run directly from the phone. The site contains logs of its activity that you can browse to keep tabs on the app’s behavior. The logs are quite detailed: for example, the app scan log will tell you how many apps were searched.

Once you begin a scan, you can continue to move about the app.
The Backup feature covers your contacts, photos, and your call log, and is encrypted for security during transfer. Restoring allows a full restoration of all backed-up data as well as granular control over which specific calls, photos, and contacts are restored.
The Privacy adviser rounds up all the permissions from your apps and lets you know which apps have access to the different parts of your phone. This is an excellent, simple tool for checking out what your apps are doing, because, let’s face it: when installing a new app, most people just aren’t reading deep into the permissions list.
Another smart feature of the app is the ability to control which of the modules you use. You can toggle all four of the main features on or off, which is great for users who prefer to use alternate backup options, for example.
Like many other apps that rely on a free and clear signal to function properly, Lookout’s backup and locator features can fail when signal-throttling apps, such as JuiceDefender, interfere with Lookout. What’s sorely missed here is a notification, either by e-mail or natively on the phone, that warns you that there’s been a failure to communicate.
There are some key features that Lookout only makes available in its premium upgrade, which costs $2.99 per month or $29.99 for a one-year license. The Privacy adviser, photo backup, call backup, data transfer to a new phone, remote wipe, remote lock, and premium support are all restricted to the premium upgrade.
As noted earlier, Lookout’s performance is hard to gauge on a purely antivirus-based scale. What we did look at is how the phone start-up times are affected by the app. When looking at “cold booting” the phone, in which the phone is completely shut off, started, and then timed until the 3G connection has been established, the Droid 2 we tested without Lookout averaged 58.46 seconds to boot over three attempts. With Lookout installed, the phone averaged 1 minute, 9.83 seconds to boot over three attempts. It would definitely be an improvement if the app caused less of an impact on a phone’s start-up time, as an addition of nearly 10 seconds can feel much longer on a phone.
When tested on a different handset following the same procedure, Lookout’s performance was much improved. When tested on a LG Optimus U running Android 2.2, the phone took an average of 51.12 seconds to start up over three cold boots when Lookout was running. Without Lookout, the phone started in an average of 48.31 seconds. An impact of about two and a half seconds on startup time is completely respectable, and indicates a minimal impact on the phone. It also highlights how different hardware, different app installations, and different cellular networks can affect a phone’s boot time.
Once logged in to, you can track your phone if it’s on, as well as remotely lock it, wipe it, or have it emit a piercing siren designed to annoy the thief and alert others.
Lookout will also add a couple seconds to the installation of any app, as it scans newly installed apps to ensure that they’re safe. Depending on which apps are running in the background, this can be inconsequential or feel like tedium in a handset. It’s an essential part of Lookout’s protective behaviors, although that doesn’t mean we wouldn’t like to see it shortened.
Overall, Lookout’s performance impact on Android’s speed is the app’s weak point. It will improve as hardware improves, although for now it seems to be a necessary evil for the app’s features.
Lookout adds a necessary security net to your Android phone. Even if you disable the antivirus protection, its other features make it more than worthwhile by providing essential features not otherwise available in one package. Either the free version or the premium upgrade is worth having, since both contribute significantly to keeping your phone and your data on it safe.

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Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware is a high performance anti-malware application that thoroughly removes even the most advanced malware and spyware. With one of the fastest, most effective quick scans and malware removal capabilities on the market, this program is the perfect addition to your PC’s defenses. The full version of the product includes a number of key features, including the ability to schedule updates and scans and most importantly, a real-time malware protection module that blocks malicious processes before they even start.

Version 1.36 adds new heuristics for Vundo infections.


Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is a surprisingly effective freeware antimalware tool. It’s a relatively speedy malware remover, with the quick scan taking about 8 minutes even with other high-resource programs running. The heuristics engine proved on multiple computers during empirical testing that it was capable of determining the difference between false positives and dangerous apps.

The app has some nice features rolled in, too. It supports multiple drive scanning including networked drives, context menu options including a scan-on-demand for individual files, and the FileAssassin option under the More Tools section for removing locked files. The interface is simple, but pleasant-looking and well-organized. Tabs live just below the oversized logo, with few options per tab to keep down the clutter. The installation process was fast enough, but interestingly offered up the well-kept changelog and an instant definition file update.

Do note that the real-time protection is restricted to the paid version, as is the scheduler for updates and scans. Overall, though, Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is a responsive malware remover that does what it should with a minimum of fuss.

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AVG Anti-Virus – AVG Antivirus has been an up and coming virus scanner for many years. Its free version is one of the most downloaded files on the Internet in the Computer Security sector. The new interface is clean and intuitive while still remaining useful. AVG went through a re-write of their virus scanning engine and included two of their stand alone products with AVG Antivirus as well. AVG Antispyware and AVG Antirootkit were both integrated with the virus scanner. Also revamped is the way AVG Antivirus uses the hardware within your computer. It has been changed to make better use of the multiple cores which are common in todays computers. This should speed up scanning as well as reduce slowdowns.

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AVG Free Edition is the well-known antivirus protection tool. AVG Free is available free of charge to home users for the life of the product. Rapid virus database updates are available for the lifetime of the product, thereby providing the high level of detection capability that millions of users around the world trust to protect their computers. AVG Free is easy to use and will not slow your system down (low system resource requirements. Highlights include automatic update functionality, the AVG Resident Shield, which provides real-time protection as files are opened and programs are run, free Virus Database Updates for the lifetime of the product, and AVG Virus Vault for safe handling of infected files.

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Kaspersky Anti-Virus – Kaspersky Labs has been one of the best antivirus software developers in the world for over a decade and now Kaspersky Anti-Virus  only strengthens that reputation. Founded by Natalia and Eugene Kaspersky in 1997, this Russian company is often the first to find and identify new viruses. Long used in Russia and Europe, Kaspersky is now making inroads in the North American market. Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2009 is one of the most effective antivirus packages in the world today and boasts a great interface with easy to use and intuitive controls.

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The Kaspersky Online Virus Scanner scans your computer for malicious code and offers the same   exceptional detection rates as other Kaspersky Lab products.

Kaspersky Labs has always been known for its ability to effectively detect and remove viruses as well as or better than any software program on the market. Like BitDefender, Kaspersky was able to remove over 98% of all viruses it encountered in the most recent  objective tests of Kaspersky is also certified by all of the major virus/malware testing laboratories. Tests confirm Kaspersky’s effectiveness. It found every virus on the test computer. 

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