The rising popularity of smartphones is not going unnoticed by angel investors. Many companies that produce smartphone applications have arisen with angel funding. But another aspect of smartphone technology has attracted attention from investors.
San Francisco based Lookout Mobile Security has raised $5.5 million in Series A funding from a combination of angel investors and two venture capital firms. Lookout is one of a number of companies providing smartphone security services. Managing security for smartphones is more difficult than securing laptop computers. Desktop style security is not portable to smartphone platforms. This challenge is looming for IT departments that are accountable for security of the rising use of smartphones for work.
For now Lookout only sells to individual consumers. But the company intends to release an enterprise version soon. So far the big security firms, such as McAfee and Symantec, have been slow to provide solutions. Lookout and similar firms—such as MobileIron, Good Technologies, Sybase, and Trust Digital—are supplying the biggest advances.
The approach of Lookout is combining smartphones with cloud computing. Cloud-based services offer anti-virus and firewall protection plus data backup and remote data deletion for lost smartphones. In addition, Lookout provides another feature not offered by competitors. Lookout technology permits tracking and locating a lost smartphone by using an interactive online map. A scream-sounding feature permits easy location of a lost phone. Moreover, a smartphone thief cannot turn off the feature. So he’s likely to discard the screaming phone.
Security is an important issue because of so much malware on the web and the rising use of smartphones as mobile web-browsing devices. In addition, the amount of data stored on smartphones means that losing a devise represents a large potential security breach. Proper security is requiring IT departments to focus on smartphones. Providing them with solutions is the goal of Lookout Mobile Security and the angel investors who have been eager to support and profit from this technology need.