FCC Intros Smartphone Security Checker

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The FCC this week released a new online tool, the Smartphone Security Checker, which provides consumers with a customized 10-step action plan to protect their mobile devices.

"The checker allows users to select their OS of choice, and then spits out a bulleted list of tips for, among other things, setting PINs and passwords, installing apps from 'trusted sources,' installing patches, and being 'smart on open Wi-Fi networks,'" writes The Verge's T.C. Sottek.

"Security Checker also suggests that users consider installing third-party anti-malware software," writes MobileBurn's Andrew Kameka. "That's not surprising considering that in addition to partnering with the CTIA and BlackBerry, the FCC reached out to the following companies: Lookout Mobile Security, McAfee, Sophos, Symantec, and the National Cyber Security Alliance."

"It’s a simple website, but seeing the government reach out to smartphone users and specifically try to protect them is encouraging -- especially in the midst of the holiday season, when millions of smartphones will be gifted," writes VentureBeat's Meghan Kelly. "Mobile security is now recognized as a need instead of a 'nice to have.' Consumers have their bank accounts, work accounts, health apps, email, and more on their phones -- apps that reach much deeper into the person than just text messages and photos."