Microsoft’s rotten-platform version of Windows Defender, now known as Microsoft Defender for Individuals, is now are living: an attractive way to guard your Android cell phone as effectively as your PC.

For these who merely personal a Windows 11 PC, there’s nothing that demands you download Microsoft’s new preview app. It’s rather different, then again, must you personal an Android cell phone in addition to your PC. We’d counsel that you are attempting out this attractive, free utility that promises to watch over the information you download for your cell phone as effectively as the hyperlinks you access. (Defender will provide protection to Apple Macs and iPhones, as effectively.)

There is a small catch, then again: You’ll want a Microsoft 365 account to exercise Microsoft Defender, and this will most efficient provide protection to a total of 5 units. Otherwise, Windows Defender can be downloaded here for PCs.

The existing Windows Defender (left) versus the new Microsoft Defender Preview (upright). Launch this image in a new tab to zoom in.Mark Hachman / IDG

You’re handiest served by installing the app on each your Android cell phone/tablet and your PC, as Defender offers you an overview of how it’s retaining all of your units.

The name itself is a bit complicated, since Windows Defender was previously the name of Windows’ personal security gadget, now renamed Microsoft Security. (Windows Defender Firewall level-headed appears within the Maintain an eye on Panel.) The new Microsoft Defender for Individuals offers antimalware protection for each Macs and PCs, but suitable Web protection on Android and iOS.

From a PC level of view, Microsoft Defender Preview doesn’t appear to cease anything materially different from the Windows Defender that’s already for your PC. In fact, Microsoft Defender merely cleans up the “Virus and Threat Detection” dashboard from the Windows Security portion of Windows Defender and gifts it in a fashionable, Windows 11-ish model. (Pulling out and cleaning up parts of Windows and repurposing them in other parts of Windows appears to be fairly normal these days.) We don’t know, then again, if Microsoft Defender will eventually replace Windows Security.

On a cell phone, at least, Microsoft Defender is rather more straightforward. Certain, Google and Android work at the back of the scenes to guard your cell phone, but Microsoft Defender works to appease that portion of your brain that seeks visible proof that your cell phone is being protected. Microsoft Defender sniffs hyperlinks that you access for your cell phone to be positive you’re now not downloading malware, and also investigates any apps already for your cell phone to be positive that they’re now not known to harbor malware. Naturally, if it finds anything, this will pop up a notification. You also have the option of requiring security data to be shared with the administrator who owns the Family Safety account that the units are connected to.

A collection of monitors displaying the event of how Microsoft Defender installs on an Android instrument, along with the permissions required, the instrument scan, and finally part of the dashboard.Mark Hachman / IDG

Microsoft Defender will ask for permission to access the “Accessibility Companies” permission of your Android instrument, which affords Defender that leeway to examine hyperlinks and apps. This may also require you to manually toggle the permission change, one thing you may now not be accustomed to doing. Scans will take place periodically, that may reduce down on battery lifestyles—but how powerful, we can’t say. It may be helpful to ascertain your Android settings to acquire out how many assets Defender is intriguing.

Microsoft Defender doesn’t appear to be a software that accountable PC and Android customers would necessarily want. However for these pre-younger other folks and younger other folks who have been given a cell phone to remain in contact with their parents (and may then contemplate to download apps willy-nilly), Defender appears admire a first rate safety blanket to be positive they’re now not downloading a risky app that may stay up stealing their data.

This fable was updated on June 16 to designate that the Microsoft Defender app for individuals is now are living. The fable has also been corrected to designate that the app also protects 5 units, now not four.

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