You have got your brand new Android handset. Now what? You need to spice up your handset with interesting applications and games. Android market is plush with loads of apps and games. You can visit android app store and download apps seamlessly - all from your mobile phone. While google has taken lot of precautionary measures to keep 'bad guys' away, it is important that you as an android user is educated on few safety tips while downloading and installing apps.
How to keep android phone safe when downloading apps?
No platform is completely immune to security flaws & data concern. Hackers and crackers get through any (both new & existing) OS to expose the underlying loopholes present in it. Even iPhone app store has some malware infected apps. Naturally, Android being an open OS there are bound to be lot of malwares & infected apps.
So to keep your Android powered mean machine in total control under you, there are few safety measures to follow. Follow this and keep away from malicious n threat attacking apps.
Study new Apps & their makers
Have you ever read manual of any new gadget or any thing you bought? Answer would be- LOLZ MAHN, who reads them? It might be alright if you are a gizmo freak, but in case of apps you should go through the developer profile before installing any new app.
One of the great & reliable tests to check whether app is of good nature and is void from any serious threats from hacker & cracker community is to just scroll down to “ABOUT THE DEVELOPER” section. If it’s of good developer then you’ll definitely find info about it which have some meaning. Else, you’ll be finding some doubtful, irrelevant, incomplete & fishy info.
Also look for “VIEW MORE APPLICATION”. In this section you’ll end up getting some more apps from the same developer. If the app is from a malicious production house you’ll find doubtful apps like DOWNNLOAD, FREE, XXX, etc etc. If you check it thoroughly it’ll clearly show that apps were clones of each others. I.e. it’ll have only different labels and different start up but deep inside it will contain the same malware.
Even if it doesn’t contain any malware or threats attached to it, then the app may still throw up several pop-ups and redirections which will eventually lead you to porn sites and not-safe-for-work apps.
Check the Permissions
Permissions are the section where you can find which utilities/features of your phone the app going to use? For example sound, camera, internet, phone call,text message, etc. A wall paper app does not require permission to make a phone call or to send text message. If it is requesting so, then you know something's fishy! Some Apps interferes with your data connection and snoops around for valuable information such as your personal information, registry information and will silently transmit to some random server. So, it is important you read up about the permissions requested by the app. The app should request permission only for those features that are relevant to it.
Install Security Apps
In addition to the above basic checks, you can automate the security check on newly downloaded apps. You have to install Download checking security apps. Two apps stand out Lookout and Norton Mobile Security. Lookout is a free Mobile Security app. It scans the applications for potential malwares, viruses or any kind of threats. Once lookout is installed in your mobile phone, it automatically scans the installed apps and any new apps you are installing from the market. In addition to the security, Lookout offers nice little features such as remote backup, lost phone tracker and remote wiping facility. Norton has been a leader in anti-virus and naturally they are offering a solution for mobile phone users too. It works just the way it does on a PC. But norton is a paid app. So, go out and install these security apps to protect your well-earned gadget. But remember to perform the basic security checks on these 'security' apps before you install one. You never know :)
Happy downloading, long live ANDROID!!!
Posted on behalf of Ruturaj
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