But security software such as TrustGo (and other examples here) can scan an app after download, checking for known malware hidden in its code, and do the same to any micro SD memory card you add to the device. If it finds something suspect, it will alert you and offer you the option to delete the app. (Like all here, it scored at least a 95% detection rate in trials conducted by AV-Test, an independent security company.) TrustGo can also run a scheduled sweep of the phone’s memory to look for infection. Useful other features include Easy App Manager, which provides an overview of all apps installed and the memory they use, and System Manager, which monitors your mobile data usage, warning you if you approach a pre-set monthly limit. Register a free account and you can back up contacts and other data online; track a missing or stolen device on a map via TrustGo’s website; and remotely lock the device, or use its camera to snap anyone entering a wrong password. Verdict: Might not be pretty to look at, but works well and you get a huge number of features.
F-Secure Mobile Security£12.95 a year
Best for: Parents
Basic Android devices are some of the cheapest smartphones you can buy, and are often given to children. Any parent worried by what those children are getting up to might want to opt for F-Secure’s software, which — along with app scanning — offers two levels of browsing control, for “child” or “teen”, that block links to websites known to be associated with activities including cults, weapons, drugs and adult content. Chat rooms and forums are also monitored, and there’s the option to allow your child access only to approved phone numbers and contacts. A parent can also view the phone’s browsing and calling history. Again, a lost phone can be located on an online map, and locked or erased remotely. A particularly useful feature is that if the Sim card is changed, the phone can be set to lock itself and report the number of the new Sim to you.