Mobile child safety startup, Mobiflock, a GigaOM Mobilize 2011 LaunchPad winner
09/25/2011

GigaOM, the technology news, research and events company, has named Mobiflock, the mobile safety and security company, as one of the 10 most promising mobile startups. In addition, Mobiflock also announced the launch of its parental control service for Android phones.

Online PR News – 25-September-2011 – – Mobiflock a GigaOM Mobilize 2011 LaunchPad winner

GigaOM, the technology news, research and events company, has named Mobiflock, the mobile safety and security company, as one of the 10 most promising mobile startups. Mobiflock’s parental control for smartphones application will be presented at Mobilize 2011, GigaOM’s mobile web conference, in San Francisco later this year on 26 September.

“Dozens of forward-thinking young mobile startups applied to Mobilize 2011 LaunchPad, but these 10 companies stood out for their innovative technologies, executable ideas, and strong business models,” said Kevin Tofel, Mobile Editor at GigaOM and chair of Mobilize 2011.

In addition, Mobiflock also announced the launch of its parental control service for Android phones. This means the child safety service is now available for almost 60%* of the global smartphone market. Mobiflock helps to make smartphones safer for children by giving parents visibility of how their children are using their phones, as well as providing blocking and alerting capabilities to protect their children from harm.

Although child safety and parental control services are established good practice in the computer world, they are only now also becoming available for the mobile device. A Carphone Warehouse and YouGov study in the UK showed that 85% of parents don’t use parental control services on their children’s phones. In addition, nearly half of all parents were unaware that adult content can be accessed by mobile phone.

Mobiflock has been specifically designed for the mobile environment and its particular challenges. Some of the existing dangers children might encounter, including bullying, accessing inappropriate content and sexual grooming, have spread to the online mobile environment. In addition, newer risks to children are emerging thanks to the popularity of the mobile phone, such as sexting, mobile chat or being online late into the night. What’s more, a mobile phone is a very personal device and is often carried by the child 24/7 – further exacerbating the impact and potential of these threats.

“The digital generation gap that exists between children and parents today is unprecedented. This is impacting moms’ and dads’ ability to be effective, proactive parents,” said Patrick Lawson, Mobiflock’s founder. “As a first step, parents need to learn about how their children use their smartphones so that they don’t over-, or under-, react if the child does encounter a dangerous situation. This way parents can educate their children about how to cope with online threats.

“And until children are old enough to cope by themselves, parents need to protect their children from the dangers that do exist, while still giving them the benefits of having a mobile phone.”

Mobiflock encourages parents to discuss the use of the service with their children, and a small icon appears on the handset when Mobiflock is active so the child knows they are protected.

Mobiflock is currently available as a free beta service. Android users can download Mobiflock from the Android Market: https://market.android.com/details?id=com.mobiflock.android
Nokia Symbian users can download Mobiflock from the Ovi Store: http://store.ovi.com/content/102108

* Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, June 9, 2011. Based on unit shipments, IDC estimates Android will capture 38.9%, and Symbian 20.6%, of the global smartphone market in 2011.

Notes to editors:

1. Morgan Stanley Research predicts that smartphone sales will be greater than computer sales in 2012.
2. Gartner Inc. estimates that smartphone sales will reach 468 million in 2011, 57.7% more than 2010.
3. According to a 2011 report by MobileYouth, around 1.8 billion young people own a mobile phone – this is equivalent to the largest country on earth.
4. Almost half of UK teenagers, 47%, now own a smartphone, according to telecoms regulator Ofcom’s latest Communications Market Report. 
5. According to a survey carried out by Bullying UK, 43.5% of respondents between 11 and 16 years old had been bullied via social networks.
6. Mobiflock undertook an informal survey of parents that showed that 95% of the parents spoken to wanted greater visibility on their child’s mobile phone usage, and 67% were concerned about how much money their child spent on their mobile phone.

About Mobiflock

Mobiflock, www.mobiflock.com, has set out to fill the mobile security gap with a range of smartphone management and safety services that gives individuals and parents the tools to monitor and manage their mobile devices; and prevent private information stored on mobile devices from falling into the wrong hands.

Mobiflock also enables businesses to better manage their mobile workforce and protect their employees’ corporate mobile devices from viruses and malware.

The Mobiflock product range consists of a parental control service, a personal smartphone tracker, and a corporate smartphone manager. A set of open APIs allows developers to take advantage of the Mobiflock technology in their applications.

Download the beta version of the parental control service for free:
Android Market https://market.android.com/details?id=com.mobiflock.android
Ovi Store http://store.ovi.com/content/102108

For more information about GigaOM Mobilize 2011: http://www.mobilizeconf.com

About Patrick Lawson

Patrick Lawson was previously a founder and chief technical officer at mobile messaging company Clickatell. Before that he built property company Pam Golding’s first web site, which was one of the first in the southern hemisphere and the first to sell a property that had only been viewed online.

For more information please contact:
Vanessa Clark
Vanessa.clark@mobiflock.com
In the UK: +44 20 3026 9452
In South Africa: +27 82 335 1117