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Free Lookout Security and Antivirus

Ignatius from Illinois asks:

I understand that there are several antivirus apps for Android phones. Can you recommend one?

Thanks for the question, Ignatius. The debate rages on about the necessity and effectiveness of antivirus software for smartphones, but their rapidly expanding use make attacks inevitable. If there‚Äôs one lesson to be learned from navigating cyberspace on computers, it’s that; if infections can be created and spread to unsuspecting users, someone will do it.

Security was the first issue I addressed with my Android phone. And for that, I use the free version of Lookout Security and Antivirus [1], which can be downloaded from the Android Market by clicking here [2]. Or it can be accessed with the QR Code below.


QR Reader apps can be downloaded here [3] for the Android and here [4] for the iPhone.

Once installed, the following screens offer and explain features. At the bottom of each screen, Enable is checked by default. If you’d rather not enable one of these features, uncheck the box and click the Next button.


At the bottom of the Missing Device screen, select New or Existing user, sign up (or sign in), and tap the Start Lookout button.


Lookout will then perform a spyware and malware scan. After that, when new apps are installed, they will also be scanned, with the results shown at the top of the screen.


To find a missing phone, using another device (computer, phone, etc.), go to the Lookout home page, [1] and click the Log In button.


Sign in, using your email address or mobile number.


Then, either click the Missing Device image, or the Missing Device tab.


In my tests, the phone locator was able to quickly find the phone twice in two days, at two different locations. To activate the scream feature, click the Scream button.


This feature emits a loud screaming noise, designed to discourage thieves and alert people nearby, but it’s just as likely to be used (by me at least) to find a misplaced phone. Many people keep the ring volume down on their phones, but the scream overrides the volume control, making it a more reliable way to find a phone, than by dialing the number. In addition to the scream, the phone screen will flash alternately between black and white (below).


To learn more about potential hazards, read the Lookout Mobile Threat Report [5].

Lookout mobile security is also available for iPad and Android tablets.