For the record, I purchased the VirusBarrier app this morning to try it out on the iPhone and let you know my factual experience.
1) It costs $2.99. If it catches something - malware or anything over the next year, I would not call it a waste of money in my opinion. If nothing happens, I would consider it insurance.
2) I tested an email message with a PDF attachment to see how this operated.
Due to Apple's iOS, the method that it uses to re-direct the PDF file to be scanned on the iphone is cumbersome in my opinion. One has to select a menu button to see the "Open in VirusBarrier" button. I found this was available only after I had already opened the PDF file on the iphone so it was visible.
I emailed Intego to see is they could talk to apple to include this feature in the iOS directly to make this more usefull and automated. I also asked them if any of the features are automated when selecting something to open.
I have yet to test it using Safari to browse to a web site that should be blocked if it has a phishing scheme or malware, etc..
3) Without automation, I would say this VirusBarrier App would be more useful with those using the iPad and editing/saving documents in its memory in my opinion. I don't see anyone editing documents on an iPhone.
Otherwise, Apple's iOS may limit the sales of this app due to the lack of automation.
The way iOS is implemented on the phone, unless it's jailbroken, there's not a practical method of getting a virus to execute on the phone unless it's passed through Apple's vetting process undetected. Unsigned code won't execute, so you can't download something and get a virus that way. You can't even try to open something in a DropBox and get a virus.
There are anti-virus applications for iOS phones (like VirusBarrier), but their purpose is not so much to protect the phone from viruses, but rather to detect viruses in e-mail attachments and documents that could affect other systems. Why would you care about that? It gives you a method to determine if it is safe to forward or distribute a message or file. In fact, most Mac and Linux antivirus tools exist for the purpose of protecting Windows users from viruses and that's not a bad idea, particularly in a business environment where there's likely to be many Windows client machines.
If you are looking for an antivirus application to protect your iPhone, there's really nothing, nor is there a known mechanism to attack an iPhone with a virus (unless the iPhone is jailbroken). You should be much more concerned with applications and how they handle your personal information (for example, if they can access your address book, Facebook, etc.).
If you are looking for something to vet documents before they are forwarded to Windows users, something like VirusBarrier or similar are a solution - perhaps not as convenient as on a computer, but effective.
The sun is hot (fact) but has nothing to do with this discussion just as the amount of memory used and cost of the app have nothing to do with this discussion.
I say it's a waste of money and memory because there is no benefit to the user when purchased and used... the user gets nothing for their money, i.e. it's wasted. Even if it could stop something, that something can do nothing to the iOS. It's like trying to protect a steel ball from a feather.
If there were virus problems with OSX, I might believe there could be a problem with iOS in the future but OSX has been quite secure for many years. I expect the same with iOS.
J D McIninch wrote:........... There are anti-virus applications for iOS phones (like VirusBarrier), but their purpose is not so much to protect the phone from viruses, but rather to detect viruses in e-mail attachments and documents that could affect other systems. Why would you care about that? ...........
.............You should be much more concerned with applications and how they handle your personal information (for example, if they can access your address book, Facebook, etc.). ........
Agree with your sentiments JD
I understand there are other antivirus programs for Mac OSX and they do more than just search for viruses these days. They search for malware, they detect phishing web sites, etc. and VirusBarrier for the Mac OSX does more than just scan for viruses.
From the functionality described by Intego, VirusBarrier for iOS does more than scan for viruses.
I searched the app store for other virus scanning utilities.
Here is a couple of other utility/reference apps I found in the app store:
Anti-Virus Detective - Decision tree of how you avoid malware.
Virus Scan of Suspicious Websites - only checks websites with the address you need enter.
Sophos - provides a security threat monitor but not I don't believe it warns you about going to known bad websites.
McAfee Global Threat Intelligence - like Sophos it is only informational, it does not scan, or block/warn you from going to known bad websites.
I did not see any other apps in the app store that actually did a virus scan. I don't think there are other anti-virus applications for the iphone that can actually scan for viruses in the files you may receive.
The point here is that VirusBarrier on the Mac is a real application that scans for viruses, malware, phishing etc. They have ported some of the functions of that program to the iOS. They constantly update their threat definitions file. You can scan attachments emailed to you for viruses as well as other threats. I have actually scanned an attachment but found that it was somewhat cumbersome.
I understand the opinions/fact that because the iOS is sandboxed and cannot be changed, that a virus will not effect iOS. However, you can still spread a virus to others. I would be more concerned about that with when sending email to my clients and customers or editing documents on an iPad.
With that said, the VirusBarrier app does have much more functionality that just scanning for viruses and may find malware, phishing schemes etc. to avoid one from doing something foolish.
I have had the VirusBarrier on the Mac warn me a number of times about going to certain websites.
Although I have not tested it, I suspect the further functionality of VirusBarrier for iOS will do the same.
There are alternative options, you can always perform an onine antivirus check before downloading anything. Some free services are
Using one of these services saves a lot of trouble!
The only things I "download" onto my iPhone are Apps from the iTunes store. Other downloads I do on my PC which has runs Kaspersky Internet Security 2012. No,the protection I was thinking about initially was general web browsing with the iPhone, but understand that the way iPhones work this is not a problem unless the operating system is hacked / "jailbroken"
@leonbakhan - You said, "....You are so right. There is nothing to be afaird of ..."
I hope what you said above remains true forever. I don't want to have to say "Famous last words....!"
And this applies to all of you who were dismissive of and had the arrogance to imply PJsPal's original question was stupid.
Today, no question about technology can or should be regarded as stupid. You can bet your sweet arrogance that someone somewhere will someday find a route into IOS. Don't ever think Apple has cornered the market on protective coding. They are as fallable as the others but fortunately for everyone of us iPhone, iPad and Mac users, they do more than most to ensure the software we use is the best and least apt to be hacked. I doubt any Apple exec or developer would provide you with a 100% guarantee that their iPhone, iPad or MAc software package will never be breached by a very determined and criminally aggressive hacker.
PJsPAL asked a question I was going to ask on this site. I want to thank him for saving me the trouble but I was not prepred for the answers he received from you. Had I received them I would be even more scared of using the devise I came here seeking a solution for.
For the future: when a ******* like me comes onto one of these Apple forums to ask a question that reveals a painfully inadequate ability to use and know about hi-tech Apple OS software, please don't respond with arrogance and your conceit. Just provide some worthwhile guidance devoid of your superior than thou attitudes. This way I will leave here confident in your knowledge and advice.
Thanks for this.
When I said the above words, they are for the present and not for the future.
Sure who knows what the future tech will bring us..
So one has to keep the mind open and till then it is as it is. I am no high tech in apple software,but the first time apple phone user, though I have used almost every other type, but iPhone is the for the first time.
I have extensively searched the net, the forums and the rest but nowhere is there any post saying that iphone has a definite type of software that can really be named an "anti-Virus" for iPhone.
It is mentioned that the kernel, the software is devised in such way that it does not allow other files to infringe or alter it ( except when it is jailbroken-in which the software is altered, but is apparent to the apple team and hence gets unsupported). It is the reason that it is impossible to transfer any file except through the itunes, whch acts sort of filter.
I also agree with you that the answers should be given in a very humble way.
This proves that apple users are not immune to viruses. Don't let your arrogance be the downfall of your data.
That article was not about viruses. It was about trojans. They are not the same thing. Please try to understand what you're posting about before you post it.