Bitdefender has launched Mobile Security, security software aimed at smartphones and tablet PCs running Google's Android operating system.

The free version of the software, which can be downloaded from the Android market now, features an app scanner that will automatically check new apps installed on the device for malware. Furthermore, there's an on-demand scanner that can be launched at any point by the user and the ability to remotely locate your device using GPS. The free version also benefits from an Application Audit that identifies which apps are trying to access the internet or sensitive data such as contacts list, messages, calendar entries and the Photo gallery. It will also highlights the applications that have access to billable device functions such as making phone calls or sending text messages.

Meanwhile, the Premium version, which costs £6.95 per year, builds on these functions with an Anti-Theft feature that not only allows you to remotely locate the device but also wipe the data from it and lock the device, ensuring your personal information can not be accessed if your device is lost or stolen. The paid-for app will also alert users surfing the web using the default Android browser if any of the webpage they're about to access contain malware, phishing or fraudulent content.

The software is compatible with devices running Google Android 2.2 or above.

"Security can be iron-clad and feather-light at the same time – Bitdefender Mobile Security proves it," said Bitdefender Senior Product Manager Alexandru Balan.

"The security is guaranteed by Bitdefender's years of experience on the front lines of the war against e-threats. At the same time, our in-the-cloud technology prevents battery strain, updates continuously and takes it easy on the operating system. Mobile security is, finally, truly mobile. Android device users can now be secure without having to constantly carry around their phone chargers."