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Verizon Releases Mobile Security App for Android Customers

Verizon Wireless launched a new security app to protect Android devices from attacks, loss, and thefts on Tuesday.

Verizon Wireless launched a new security app to protect Android devices from attacks, loss, and thefts on Tuesday.

The Verizon Mobile Security app offers Android customers with security features from Asurion and McAfee, Verizon Wireless said. Verizon Mobile Security protects customers from digital threats such as malicious websites and malware, as well as from physical issues that may arise when the device is lost or stolen. The new security app is available in three different ways: Verizon Mobile Security Basic, Verizon Mobile Security Premium, and as an add on to Verizon’s Total Equipment Coverage protection plan.

The free Verizon Mobile Security and offers antivirus software from McAfee to detect viruses and malware on the Android device. The app also integrates with McAfee’s online SiteAdvisor scanning tool to detect and warn customers if they attempt to browse to a suspicious Website. While the basic version is free, users must have a Verizon Wireless data plan in order to use the app, and data usage fees will apply, according to Verizon Wireless.

Verizon Mobile Security Premium, with its affordable $1.99 per month per line price tag, has all the features of the basic version along with McAfee App Alert, which informs customers which of the installed apps have the ability to access, store, or transmit data to or from the device. The premium version also has device recovery features from Asurion to remotely locate, lock and wipe devices, as well as ringing an alarm to try to find a misplaced device.

Verizon customers can also purchase Verizon Mobile Security Premium as an add-on to Total Equipment Coverage for $1 per month per line. Total Equipment Coverage combines Asurion’s Wireless Protection Plan for lost, stolen, and damaged devices, with the Verizon Wireless Extended Warranty plan to protect devices from mechanical and electrical defects after the manufacturer’s warranty period ends, Verizon said.

The app is optimized for devices running Android 2.1 (Éclair) and later versions, which means the app supports 99.4 percent of all Android devices currently on the market, according to statistics on the Android developer site. At the moment, Eclair is running on about 3.7 percent of Android devices, with most devices running some form of Gingerbread (2.3 to 2.3.7), followed by Ice Cream Sandwich (4.0 to 4.0.4) at 20.9 percent.

This isn’t McAfee’s first time teaming up with a cellular provider to provide similar security protection. Last year the company partnered with Sprint Nextel to create McAfee Mobile Security and McAfee Family Protection Android Edition apps. McAfee also worked with AT&T on a mobile device management product for enterprises.

Verizon Mobile Security is available from the Verizon Channel in Google Play, formerly known as the Android Marketplace. Users who opt for the premium version will see the charges appear on their cellular bill each month.

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