Do you own an Android phone? If so, are you aware of Madware? I wasn't until I was personally affected with Madware. What is Madware (MOBILE ADWARE) you ask?
"Madware, the term that’s been adopted for the Mobile Adware category, refers to ad networks that subject users to over-aggressive advertising on their mobile devices. Note: Madware only affects Android phones.
Due to the open nature of the Android ecosystem, spammy apps are on the rise. Without a madware blocker installed on your device, they can override your personal settings, collect your personal information, and slow down your phone. Your mobile device is a computer, and can be vulnerable in the same manner as a desktop."
Some examples of madware behaviors:
• Collects your device’s phone number
• Collects location information
• Displays ads on your notification bar
• Adds icons or shortcuts to device screen
• Modifies your web browser bookmarks
• Replaces your dial tone with an audio ad
• Sends you ads through text messages
• Changes your web browser homepage
• Deliberately hides from ad detectors (advertising module obfuscation)
What can you do to fend off these ads? Simple, download the Norton Spot app for your Android phone.
"Norton™ Spot is an ad blocker, detector, killer and stopper. It scans advertising networks that spam your device via apps you install, and identifies apps that don't respect your privacy and remove them. In addition, Norton Spot monitors for intrusive alerts and block aggressive mobile advertising (madware) practices, including apps that constantly push ads to your notification bar, create unauthorized desktop shortcuts, and secretly collect your personal information."
I have been using this app for a couple of weeks now and love it. I found my Android phone being bombarded with in-app ads after downloading a few kid-friendly apps to keep the girls entertained during our upcoming trips to visit the relatives over Christmas break. Before downloading the Norton Spot Ad Detector, I would spend what seemed like hours trying to figure out which apps were causing the ad pop ups. I don't know about you, but the last thing I want to have to is play detective and try to figure out why my phone is filled with ads when I am trying to make a call, or passing of the phone for Savannah to stay entertained with one the kid-friendly apps. Not only do I grow frustrated with these apps, but my daughter does, too, as she continually has to pass my phone back to me so I can get rid of the ad, for her to continue playing with the game.
What I loved best about this ad detector app is that it was quick and easy to install, and would alert me of apps producing these nuisance ads in my notification bar, so that I could either delete or remedy. And, with a couple of taps, I can unistall the ad-producing app in seconds. Now, how is that for convenience? And, if you allow your children to use your phone and don't have parental controls set up, then your chances of having them download apps infected with Madware goes up.
Nowadays, almost everyone has a mobile phone. According to a recent article from the Harvard Business Review as well as the PEW Research Center:
o 6 percent of 2- to 5-year-olds have their own smartphone
o 50 percent of 11 year olds have own cell phone
o 23 percent of teens have smartphone
I couldn't believe that 6% of 2 to 5 year olds have their own phone. Who are they calling? And, how do they know how to use a phone? But, then, I think about how my daughter Savannah, who is now 2 1/2 yrs. old, began using her Daddy's iPad and my Android phone to play games, watch movies, etc. at 1 year old. Even though I will not be getting my children their phone anytime soon, I need to protect my phone from being infected with Madware. And, thanks to Norton Spot, Norton's app solution for Madware, I can breath a little easier knowing that the apps I download, and those my daughter is able to download, will be scanned, and those that are detected with infected ads will be added to my notification bar for my review.
So, if you plan to download apps to your Android phone this holiday season for the kids, or let them download apps, why not make a point to add Norton Spot to your phone? Once you see how well this app does in identifying infected Madware, you will wonder how you ever lived without it.
The Norton Spot app is free to download and is available in the Google Play app store for Android devices. For maximum protection, use an antivirus and malware solution such as Norton Mobile Security, in combination with Norton Spot. Learn more about Norton Mobile Security on the Android platform: http://nms.gp.NortonApps.com.
Disclosure: I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Norton. I received a promotional item as a thank-you for participating.