Antivirus for Android: Do You Need the Extra Protection?
Android is the most used operating system when it comes to mobile devices. The OS accounts for 87.9% of the market share of smartphone owners leaving Apple far behind. The high adoption rate of Android makes it an easy target for virus attacks, malicious apps, malware, spyware and other threats.
Today we will find out if everything you need to know about antivirus for Android and considerations for selecting the top one.
Do I Need Antivirus for Android?
You may think your Android phone is safe from viruses and ransomware, but think again! I can give you instances of many viruses that have made headlines world around. Take the case of Hummingbad which affected 2 million devices worldwide. The virus steals your personal information and downloads malicious apps on your device without permission.
Shedun is a malware which spread across devices in 2015 and rooted Android devices to install adverts. Godless is another virus which found its way to Play Store and infected devices running Android 5.1 or lower.
Virus attacks are real for Android, so it always makes sense to protect yourself with the best antivirus.
How much do you love your Android phone? If you want to take care of your Anroid device, you would want to ensure that the information in it stays safe. Some of the important features of Android antivirus include-
Provides real-time security from malware by scanning downloads. Also scans your mobile to detect viruses on your internal storage or SD card.
Check the websites you visit and warn you in case of malicious content.
Uses a password to lock your apps to prevent unauthorized access. Useful for apps that contain sensitive information like messaging and banking apps.
Enables you to trace your mobile on a browser map using GPS in case it gets stolen. You can also remotely lock your device and wipe out data to protect it from privy eyes.
Creates backup on your device and cloud so that your data is safe even if something happens to the device.
How do I Scan My Phone for Viruses?
You can download and install an antivirus on your Android mobile and then use it to perform a scan. The feature can discover malware, virus and other threats that may have come as a part of some app. The mobile antivirus apps run automatic scans at regular intervals so that your system remains out of bounds from viruses and phishing activities.
If you don’t want to use an antivirus, you can manually scan your phone for virus.
- Put your Android to Safe Mode. You can do this by holding the power button.
- Go to the Settings and select Apps. You will get the list of downloaded apps.
- Now look for any dubious apps or the ones which you don’t remember installing
- Tap on the app and access App info page. Now select Uninstall.
Can Android Phone Get Viruses?
You can get virus on your Android in many ways. Most of the time the malicious code arrives with apps and unknowingly make way into your device. The risks increase when you are downloading apps from third-party sources instead of Google Play which ensures the legitimacy of all apps.
Your Android phone can also attract viruses if you have rooted it. The process bypasses the security in place increasing the chances of attracting viruses.
Email attachments can also contain viruses and sometimes malicious websites are to blame.
Free Antivirus Apps for Android
Whether you want to pay for your antivirus or not is completely up to you. Free Android antivirus apps provide basic protection from viruses and malware. You can scan your apps to make sure that they are not infected with spyware or adware. Some free antivirus programs may also come with web protection to protect you from online threats.
Paid Android antivirus software is generally more feature-rich than free ones. You can get a range of tools to protect yourself from viruses along with advanced features like anti-phishing, backup and parental locks. If you are constantly using third-party app stores or use unverified apps, then a paid antivirus can make sense.
How to Download Antivirus Apps for Android
You can either download an antivirus from the website of the developer or search for it on Play Store. In case you choose the website, then download the APK on your mobile and install it.
Here’s how to download an antivirus from Play Store-
- Launch Play Store app from the menu or home screen.
- Use the search bar to enter the name of the antivirus.
- Select the antivirus from the search result and tap on install.
Now exit Google Play and open the antivirus app.
- Comprehensive scanning options
- Lots of security features
- Available for different platforms
- VPN and safe site for online protection and anonymity
- Device performance and optimization tools
- Comes with advanced two-wall firewall
- One account for all devices
- The renewal rates are quite high
- No free trial
- iOS app doesn't have antivirus
- No email protection
- Powerful and effective antivirus engine
- Bonus features at zero cost
- Can be customized according to your security preferences
- Network inspector, VPN mode, password manager
- Good scores from testing labs
- Comes with dedicated gaming mode
- Can impact the system performance for slower and older devices
- Contains advertisements to upgrade to pro version
- Secure browser collects search history and web behavior for selling to third parties
- Strong malware protection and system boosting tools in free version
- Works across multiple devices and operating systems
- Wide selection of antivirus solutions
- Light on system resources
- Simple and intuitive interface
- A limited number of devices covered in the free version
- Only Chrome and Firefox is compatible with Web Shield
- Doesn't have a free trial
- Limited choice of VPN servers