Anti-theft vs Antivirus

AV vs AT post header

In this day and age everybody understands why we have antivirus software installed on our devices. As the popularity of the internet surged during the late 90´s and early 2000, antivirus solutions became big business in the attempt to protect all computer users from hackers who created viruses and other malicious software. Some of their main intentions being to steal information, bring down networks and generally disrupt business.


So what exactly is anti-theft software?

About two years ago, a new kind of security application was starting to make its presence felt in the mobile applications market. Anti-theft solutions have been around for longer, but were aimed mainly at computer users within corporate enterprises. However, with the staggering growth of smartphone users in recent times who frequently now access the internet on them, anti-theft software for mobiles has become an important and lucrative business.


How does it work?

In the event of your device either getting lost or stolen these ingenious security solutions are able to do some remarkable things, including:

★  Tracking the precise location of your missing device using GPS, WiFi geolocation, or cell-tower triangulation.
★  Capturing information about the thief without their knowledge (including secretly taking photos, recording numbers called or SMS´s sent to).
★  Backing up and/or encrypting your personal data.
★  Remotely triggering an alarm.
★  Locking down the device from further use.

Now customers have a far better chance of retrieving their missing device. When they report it missing to the police they can also provide a wealth of information too which will greatly assist law enforcement in tracking down the thief.


Anti-theft solutions today

As a number of small anti-theft startup companies began gaining traction within the market, the bigger antivirus companies took note. They quickly realised that these anti-theft solutions could easily be combined with their antivirus products to create a far more comprehensive security solution. A number of these startups were bought by some of the larger household names (e.g. McAfee and Avast). Nowadays, just about every popular antivirus provider offers anti-theft as standard when downloading to your smartphone or tablet. So it looks as if the technology is here to stay.

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