Last week on Thursday Microsoft told us that it is planning to fetch Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection, to phones and other devices running Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android. Microsoft is developing apps for both mobile OS that are designed to provide antivirus protection and a “full command line experience.” Microsoft isn’t exposing exactly how the apps would work, but the company will preview them soon at the RSA Conference.
The mobile apps come just under a year after Microsoft started a public preview for its Defender antivirus on macOS. Microsoft has changed the name Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) to Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) so that the Mac client provides full virus and threat protection mixed with the ability to perform quick or full scans.
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In the case of mobile devices, Rob Lefferts, Microsoft corporate vice president told CNBC that the Defender software could help companies to protect employees from things like malware and phishing attacks. Apple’s and Google’s app stores are “pretty safe,” Lefferts told CNBC, but “malware does happen on those platforms.”
One of the bigger goals for Defender on iOS and Android is phishing prevention to stop employees at companies from exposing their usernames, passwords, or other account information accidentally. How Microsoft achieves this on iOS isn’t clear just yet, though.
It’s totally uncertain that when Microsoft will release the antivirus software for iOS and Android, though CNBC reports it’ll be available later this year.
Microsoft is also announcing Microsoft Defender ATP for Linux today. A preview version is available for businesses to test as part of Microsoft’s broader effort to secure devices beyond Windows and macOS.
From the latest declaration by Microsoft is an attempt by the company to further enter into the smartphone industry, after providing antivirus security to PCs for decades. Some weeks ago, the company introduced its all-in-one Office app for both Android and iOS devices that provides access to Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
In 2019, Microsoft also partnered with Samsung to sell some of its smartphones pre-installed with Microsoft Android apps. The Redmond company in 2018 brought Windows Defender Browser Protection to popular web browsers, Google Chrome and Firefox in the form of an add-on.