McAfee launches Smart Perimeter security software to fight smartphone loss

McAfee has launched a beta version of the new Smart Perimeter feature of its Mobile Innovations app, which alerts users if their smartphone or tablet goes missing.

The feature, jointly created by McAfee and its owner Intel, prevents theft or loss of devices by alerting users with an alarm if their smartphone or tablet is more than 30 feet away. Once outside the designated perimeter, the device will lock, preventing thieves from accessing data.

Users need to have a second device to be alerted on, but the software allows each device to track the other. This means, for example, that a person carrying a smartphone will never leave their tablet computer behind, or vice-versa. The tracking can also help recover stolen devices.

Despite a growing majority of people owning a smartphone or tablet, only 20 per cent of those with multiple devices have software on their smartphones and just 13 per cent on their tablet, according to a Digital Assets study conducted by McAfee in May.

The app also includes a safe QR code reader to help protect against a growing number of malicious codes, and it includes a Data Vault for protecting photos, videos and documents behind a PIN. McAfee Mobile Security is required for this feature.

“The McAfee Mobile Innovations app will help us to obtain users’ input on device and web security, as well as strengthen anti-theft and privacy measures to protect personal data,” said Lianne Caetano, director of consumer mobile product marketing at McAfee.

The Mobile Innovations app is available for free for Android devices via the Google Play store.