AVG respond to Windows Phone App Removal

Microsoft recently removed the AVG Anti-Virus app from the marketplace over concerns about it’s actions, and now the AV company have responded:

Yuval Ben-Itzhak from AVG says:

“I wanted to take a moment to clarify and respond to some of the questions and comments raised in social media forums.”

“AVG believes that the Windows Phone 7 OS will continue to increase in popularity and, as it does, it will become a high value target for thieves and hackers.

For this reason, we made a strategic decision to deliver a security product to this platform in its very early days – as we did with Android.  Our objective is to start Windows mobile users off on the right foot and help them create a safe and secure community.”

“We worked closely with Microsoft on the development of this product.  Our teams were trained by Microsoft and our software was provided to the company for review and certification prior to release. We did implement a number of requested changes provided to us by Microsoft.”

“All of the data we collect is used solely to offer users an exceptional security service with state-of-the-art GPS tracking.

  • We will not sell your data to anyone.
  • We do not share or otherwise disclose your data to anyone without your permission.
  • We do not mine your data for patterns.
  • We do not use your data to target ads.
  • We do not access your location data without your permission.”

He lists the features of the app as including:

  1. The Safe Web Surfing function helps protect users from social engineering attacks that are intended to drive them to take wrong decisions while online
  2. This protection engine checks the safety of a URL in case the user tries to access a malicious web site.
  3. The Safe Search function allows users searching the web to avoid malicious web sites.
  4. Our file scanning engine scans media files, mp3s, video and play lists and checks against a blacklist of bad files. This is a result of several “proof of concepts” disclosed in public.

However, from everything I’ve seen online, it all it does is scan some EICAR strings and the word “Hebrew” …which seems at odds with the above?

The full post can be found here:


AVG Windows Phone App removed from Marketplace

Microsoft’s marketplace is steadily filling up with new apps but unfortunately, not all are awesome. This is the most high profile WP7 app removal I’ve seen (possibly the only one so far?) and perhaps surprisingly, it involves AVG. The perennial free AV makers, once the choice of IT bods the world over, recently released an Anti-Virus app for Windows Phone 7.


When it’s existence was first noted people such as Justin Angel & Rafael Rivera (the latter part of the Chevron WP7 jailbreak team) started to investigate it’s worthiness…and it didn’t go well for AVG!

Justin tweeted:


and Rafael’s blog post says this:


This prompted Brandon Watson, responsible for apps & developers for WP7, to investigate internally at Microsoft and then say this:


So it’s an anti-virus app that doesn’t actually protect from viruses, servers ads and send your location, along with unique identifiers, back to AVG…WTF?!

I’m keen to see what AVG say about this. Was it a proper corporate decision or a rogue AVG developer acting alone?

Thanks to WinRumors, Justin Angel & Rafael Rivera.

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