Google shines a spotlight on security with new Protected by Android branding.

By Mike Baruah, Our North America Correspondent.

The company wants to assure you that your data’s in good hands.

Google may not be as slick as Apple when it comes to peddling security with its operating system but it has been working hard on upping its game. With the presence of features like Privacy Dashboard, status bar indicators that notify of apps using sensitive hardware, and the ability to share the approximate location over the precise one, there’s no doubt that the latest version of Android is bustling with security — so it would make sense to market it that way. And that’s where a new branding comes in, with the goal of reminding you to rest easy on privacy if you own an Android.

A new video uploaded today on Android’s official YouTube channel is all about telling you that you are “Protected by Android,” with images of people happily on their phones and slides containing short, reassuring captions in between. Nothing new’s getting announced here with the video only going through some of the operating system’s well-known security features. Play Protect makes sure that you’re “safe from malware and harmful apps,” though the whole spiel about “non-stop updates” falls a little flat when software support varies so much not just between device makers, but device series.

We do expect to see more of that new “Protected by Android” branding along with that green shield logo to pop up across the OS and elsewhere from here on out.
The video concludes by splashing the screen with a vanity URL that ultimately redirects users to the Safety section of the Android website where features teased in the video are explained in a little more detail.
All of this is a part of Google’s latest efforts to let you know how focused it is (forget Apple) on privacy and security. If you want substantive proof, we think that automatic permission revocation from Android 11 is a terrific example. And if you aren’t convinced by that, Android 13 will make it easier to understand and control your settings with a combined security and privacy menu.