McAfee's Android AV redeemed after AV-Test redoes tests

Test company used old version of Android software, says McAfee.

German antivirus security testing outfit AV-Test has "updated" its Android antivirus rankings, pushing McAfee up from a lowly ineffective piece of software to a top 10 Android security product.

The testing company said that "some parties consider certain aspects of our initial test report to be imprecise or flawed."

Now, instead of seven top products, there are 10. Those that moved up included McAfee, MYAndroid Protection, NQ Mobile and Zoner.

The shift up, however, was most important for McAfee, since it was the only long-established desktop antivirus company that failed to fend off at least 65 per cent of Android malware, falling into the "disappointing" group that supposedly protected against just 40 per cent or less of Android malware.

"On March 6, the widely recognised institute AV-TEST published a long awaited review of Malware Protection for Android–with really disappointing results for us and the report was widely quoted in the media," McAfee said on its company blog.

McAfee said AV-Test had actually used an "outdated version" of McAfee Mobile security.

The seven others that were in the top list (those that protected against 90 per cent of malware tested) continue to be considered valuable protection by AV-Test for consumers.

The top ten companies in alphabetical order now include: Avast, Dr. Web, F-Secure, Ikarus, Kaspersky, Lookout, McAfee, MYAndroid Protection, NQ Mobile and Zoner.

"Users of products made by these companies can be assured that they are protected against malware," said AV-Test in updated report.

avast! Free Mobile Security, DR. Web antivirus light, F-Secure Mobile Security, IKARUS, Kaspersky and Lookout were the original seven considered to the be the most effective AV Android products.

AV-Test previously said that McAfee (and others in that group) "may not yet have a sufficient infrastructure to collect a broad range of malware or they focus on a local market. They provide reliable malware protection against a few families, but have trouble with some others.”

AV-Test has removed the original report from its website and replaced it with the updated one.

The company originally had ranked 41 products according to the percentage of 618 malware families it tested each company's software against, ranking them into three groups: those that protected against more than 90 per cent of the test sample, those that protected against 65 to over 40 per cent, those that fended off less than 40 per cent and those that basically did nothing.

Vendors that now fall into the 65 to 90 per cent protection group include AegisLab, AVG Mobilation, Bitdefender,BullGuard, Comodo, ESET, Norton/Symantec, QuickHeal, Super Security, Total Defense, Trend Micro, Vipre/GFI and Webroot.

Others were also redeemed somewhat by the new test. Previously, along with McAfee, Bullguard, Comodo, G Data, NetQin and Total Defense were judged to not yet have sufficient infrastructure to collect a broad range of malware or they focus on a local market.

Now, AV-Test only considers BluePoint, G Data and Kineto to fall into that category.

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