Anti-Virus On Your Phone. Reality Or Ripoff?

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I’ve been a BlackBerry user forever, and I’m damn happy about that fact. Back in the BBOS 5/6/7 days a certain subject just never came up in my circle. That subject was regarding mobile anti-virus and/or malware for our handsets.

When Android came out things started to change though.

 

As the Android operating system became ubiquitous, so did the sick desire to take advantage of the then numerous security holes available to nefarious hackers and script kiddies world wide. Just as Microsoft Windows became a target through popularity, so it would seem Google would experience the same grief with Android. I am not excusing the coders that leave numerous holes in their products. Unfortunately it was never top of mind, and that lack of foresight is unfortunate. Almost criminal.

It never really dawned on me to talk about this until today. I saw some people in a BBM group discussing it, and they (like me) are new BlackBerry Priv owners.

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There are a veritable cornucopia of anti-virus and anti-malware apps available in the Google Play store, and at first blush you’d say that this is no surprise. Considering the number of news pieces we’ve done here at UTB it’s no surprise at all.

That being said look at this next picture…

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What?

I remember when I started seeing anti-virus/malware apps in BlackBerry World. I actually laughed out loud and figured I’d never see another new one. Now there are quite a few to choose from.

I have NEVER used, nor did I think I needed one of those apps, and believe it or not I still don’t (for now). I always have faith in my BB10 devices to keep me safe from issues like malware and virus attacks. As a Priv user however, I am even more vigilant than in the past. Why? Because I’ve trained myself to be wary of Android, and its apps. I keep a close eye on Dtek. I know it doesn’t stop any malicious activity but it does notify me of potential harm. I like the fact that the device is un-rooted as well.

So finally, I have a question for you all.

Do you, or do you not use anti-virus or anti-malware apps on your mobile device? Whether you do or don’t can you tell us why?

Am I a fool for depending on my own discrimination and wits to keep me safe?

Let’s hear it!

Canuckvoip

Dave Matthews here.
I’m a phone guy by trade supplying VOIP systems for business and industry.
BlackBerry devices, playing PRS guitars in my band, golf, and RC flight are my current passions.

  • veeru789

    I have the max mobile security pro version on my DD. Only because got it free from BlackBerry in one of those festive give aways. In terms of actual use, only used it couple of times in the last few years.

    But on Android, Priv or not, I would have a paid, reputed one. Coz I don’t trust android.

  • Wayno

    I agree with Veeru for Android, however, on my Passport I believe it isn’t required, never had any issues. I do have a few that I got in app giveaways but they are not installed, just sitting in my BlackBerry World store, just in case

  • Wayno

    Oh, and good topic Canuckvoip, don’t think I’ve ever seen anti virus discussed here. But when I get a Priv, I will load one up.

  • Bobert_123

    On my passport I don’t feel the need. BB10 is as secure as it gets. When I get my Priv I still won’t use any of those security apps because in all honesty I don’t trust them. I would prefer to just use dtek, as well as my brain, to keep me safe.

    • Martin

      Exactly, common sense goes a long way.

  • bambinoitaliano

    I have anti virus apps on my Passport too. However, I never use it. There are quite a few available. To use any of them I have to share my personal files and security and contacts among other personal data. How reliable are these developers safe guarding my personal data. What’s preventing the devs selling or swallow by bigger developer that could monetize my personal data down the road? How did we get so complacent about our security and privacy with our phones while we so obsessively making sure the doors and windows of our cars and houses are locked at all time?

    • veeru789

      I think Max Mobile doesn’t store any data on their servers. It’s a paid app. Not free like those Android Apps. And BlackBerry guardian certified. Bit yeah, you don’t actually need it.

    • Martin

      I completely agree, the only person I trust with my information is myself!

  • Blackjack

    BlackBerry 10 is my antivirus

    • Martin

      Exactly!!
      locco_smiley_10

  • fishlove73

    “I have anti virus apps on my Passport too. However, I never use it. There are quite a few available. To use any of them I have to share my personal files and security and contacts among other personal data. How reliable are these developers safe guarding my personal data. What’s preventing the devs selling or swallow by bigger developer that could monetize my personal data down the road? How did we get so complacent about our security and privacy with our phones while we so obsessively making sure the doors and windows of our cars and houses are locked at all time?”

    ^^^^’This!!

    I will say this there are multiple app developers for for some OS’s. I notice on BB World there are some developers who developed for Android originally but for one reason or another they developed for BB10 additionally. Extra revenue for them perhaps? IDK.

    With my Blackberries I never worried about a virus. Even with BB10 I don’t worry too much.

    A couple of years ago when I was using Androids, I didn’t worry about viruses too much but I did keep an eye on permissions and which apps I installed. I always put Lookout Mobile security on them. Not so much for the anti virus features, but more for what blackberry protect offers me now. If I misplaced my device …I could make it ring or get a location on it or remotely wipe it if need be in case I lost it. BlackBerry 10 just offers this as a part of having a wonderful device. But with Android I had to use Lookout or Avast to offer me features which came standard on BB10.

    Now I have a question….Do the Priv’s offer blackberry protect where you can log in from a laptop or secondary device with your Blackberry ID and locate your phone, wipe it or make it ring?? Or do you have to download an App?

    I would think with the Priv and the Cryptographic Kernal (possibly unrootable) one wouldn’t have to worry, but I could be wrong. My issue with Androids in the past was always with those third party permissions.

    • Canuckvoip

      Hi fishlove,
      There is a similar app that comes with Android called “Android Device Manager” which allows you to locate your device and wipe it remotely if need be.

      • fishlove73

        Thank you Dave.

  • georgegill

    I don’t need any because i use a BlackBerry. I know of a couple of friends who insist on using Android smartphones and have been hacked and this doesn’t seem to bother them, regardless of the consequences I don’t know how people can be so naive. I believe that 95% of smartphone users really don’t need them and that’s how iOS and Android really win because these users want to fit in.

    • veeru789

      Well said.

  • Martin

    I’ve never had a need for an antivirus on any of my BlackBerry 10 devices, I only download apps from BlackBerry World and use common sense when allowing app permissions.
    I also wonder at times if some of these antivirus apps themselves are trustworthy!?

  • Anthony

    If I bought the PRIV I fully expect to not need other security-type apps. BlackBerry apps like DTEK and app upgrades for BlackBerry apps in Google Play and Amazon should be enough.

    I don’t use anti-virus and malware apps on my Passport. The operating system should be the ‘guardian’.

    One huge source of “insecurity” is app permissions and that isn’t covered by malware and anti-virus apps.

    BB10’s “Device Monitor” is what I’m hoping continues to develop and further alert the BB10 user to security threats and show exactly what apps are uploading and to where. One example: touch the “Mobile Data Usage” section in “Device Monitor” for an app and see detailed information about mobile data usage, where it’s coming from or going to.

    • Martin

      One huge source of “insecurity” is app permissions and that isn’t covered by malware and anti-virus apps.

      BB10’s “Device Monitor” is what I’m hoping continues to develop and further alert the BB10 user to security threats and show exactly what apps are uploading and to where. One example: touch the “Mobile Data Usage” section in “Device Monitor” for an app and see detailed information about mobile data usage, where it’s coming from or going to.

      This!! ^^^

  • BB4tw

    Like others have mentioned, BB10 is my antivirus software as well.

    For my Priv owning friends, pleas remember that Priv is short for privacy. They didn’t name it Sec, short for security.

    Privacy a security, while connected, are not the same thing which is something to consider when making a choice about Anti-Malware software.

    • Anthony

      No, BlackBerry is grouping privacy with security. They are saying the PRIV is also security focused.

  • jrohland

    Let’s check with the people who should know…BlackBerry. When you install any Android app, it is checked by Trendmicro to see if it is known to engage in suspect behavior. That is not done when installing BB10 apps. To me, that says BlackBerry trusts its own store but not any Android app source. So, since I trust the base OS and native apps, I am only concerned about Android apps which BlackBerry checks. I don’t feel the need for a 3rd party AV scanner.

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