Microsoft Defender is now available to download and protect your Android device from the threat of viruses and malware.

The app was confirmed in an official blog post, with it now available in public preview for those that want to add an extra layer of protection to their Android smartphones. Microsoft Defender is said to help provide protection against phishing, with Microsoft touting built-in malware protection that scans your device automatically to track and identify potentially unwanted applications on your device.

We are excited to announce the public preview of our mobile threat defense capabilities with Microsoft Defender ATP for Android. As Rob Lefferts, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft 365 Security and Compliance, mentioned in his blog, the threats in the mobile space are unique, and as more and more people use mobile devices for work, the need for organizations to protect data that is accessed through their users’ devices is increasingly imperative.

After offering a preview of these capabilities at RSA Conference 2020, we were thrilled by the response from our customers and the industry. Over the last several months, we’ve been working closely with customers who are our design partners, listening to their feedback, and enhancing the product.

When a safe application has been installed or loaded on your device, you will see a notification confirming that the app is “clean.” That’s not all though, as Microsoft Defender includes browser protection and anti-phishing scanning for messages sent via SMS, WhatsApp, email, and other applications. This means that unsafe links received via any of those mediums will be blocked right away.

Microsoft Defender also includes SmartScreen technology that will be able to block unsafe Wi-Fi network connections or networks created by malicious applications without end-user knowledge. This will ensure that you’re safe even if a third-party app is mistakenly installed.

We will see additional settings and functionality come to the Android app over the coming months, alongside an iOS app. However, the advanced controls are not likely to come to the iOS version of Microsoft Defender.

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Damien Wilde

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