12 antivirus and malware removal apps for Android

12 antivirus and malware removal apps for Android
It was 2004 when the first smartphone virus was documented. Called Cabir, it was a relatively harmless piece of code that displayed a message on the screen of the infected device. Today, 10 years later, smartphone viruses can be a million times more aggressive than their granddaddy. Some try to steal the user's data, which usually ends up leaked onto a server on the other side of the planet. Others attempt to send texts to premium phone numbers, thus generating revenue for the attacker. There have also been cases of ransomware – viruses that lock the affected device and ask its owner for money in exchange for an unlock key. 

By now it is surely clear that smartphone viruses can be a pain in the rear. Fortunately, the odds of a phone becoming infected are extremely slim even if the device runs Android, which, due to its popularity and openness, is the prime target for today's mobile viruses. Android users are safe as long as they don't install apps from any shady sources and don't visit any suspicious web sites. Yet if you do have to break this rule of thumb, then you better be using protection. Here are 12 of the best Android antivirus and malware detecting apps you'll find at the Play Store.

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19 Comments

1. QWIKSTRIKE

Posts: 1457; Member since: Mar 09, 2010

In the past wasn't it found that Mcaffe was distributing virus to make money....I'll pass on them.

10. 0xFFFF

Posts: 3806; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

This is actually how McAfee got their start. They wrote many of the original viruses for the PC, so they could then sell their solution. Since then, nothing much has changed.

2. strudelz100

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 20, 2014

Most Anti-virus and Malware prevention apps are in fact spyware themselves that do nothing except collect data and drain resources. Especially on Android. Do yourself a favor. Download from Play/App Store. Don't download sketchy apps. Look at the permissions. Don't download Anti-Virus/Malware prevention apps.

6. vincelongman

Posts: 5623; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Agreed Also don't download if its Movie.apk (or Movie.exe for Windows) And try torrent directly from the source and at the least read the comments Its just about impossible to get a virus if you know basics like those

11. 0xFFFF

Posts: 3806; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

"Most Anti-virus and Malware prevention apps are in fact spyware themselves that do nothing except collect data and drain resources." +100. This is the reality of the situation. There is no reason to install these sorts of apps. That said, installing a firewall can be a good thing. It will tell you which apps are trying to connect with the outside world. Mostly you'll need root for this, though.

3. GreekGeek

Posts: 1276; Member since: Mar 22, 2014

Antimalware for phones? SCAM No thank You

4. Drsarcastic

Posts: 136; Member since: Jul 23, 2014

How the hell do you get a virus on Android?

5. vincelongman

Posts: 5623; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

How the hell do you get a virus on any platform? I have never gotten a virus ever Not on Windows, Jailbroken iOS or rooted Android Even when I used to torrent everything on Windows

7. Cyberchum

Posts: 1013; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

I don't get all my phone contents from play store, I do sideload but I don't need an anti virus /malware app, never. Never had, maybe will but that won't be until I witness one myself;maybe I'm being reactive but one issues like this, that's how I am.

8. RareCandy

Posts: 61; Member since: Nov 20, 2014

Even the antivirus apps a spyware, poor android user :(

9. Youraveragejoe

Posts: 134; Member since: Oct 31, 2014

Miui comes with an inbuilt anti virus software.. I think I'll stick with that

12. 0xFFFF

Posts: 3806; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

Anti-virus = app that scans all your files and data for interesting stuff and uploads it to anti-virus maker. Only the ignorant use these sorts of malwares. Sad that Miui includes built-in malware. They are just stealing from their customers.

14. Youraveragejoe

Posts: 134; Member since: Oct 31, 2014

what exactly are they stealing from my phone? nuclear launch codes?

15. 0xFFFF

Posts: 3806; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

If you have the launch codes, yes :) But for most people, it is mainly contacts, texts, emails, files, etc. Maybe you are discussing some new business idea with a friend. Or a patent with some people at work. Maybe you are exchanging little love notes with your mistress. Or maybe you are saying something unhappy about the government. They want all that data because they can sell it. People think mobile is about devices. It really is not. It's all about the data.

18. Youraveragejoe

Posts: 134; Member since: Oct 31, 2014

Now if you could only back up what you are saying with some reports?

13. SPASE

Posts: 257; Member since: May 03, 2013

Just don't side-load!

16. hellbread

Posts: 309; Member since: Nov 21, 2014

Good way to use all those av programs, if you suspect you have some viruses, install one av prog, disable all of its realtime options, disable send reports to developer and scan your system once. Than uninstall it if its all ok. Dont keep it on your phone...

17. Rigbaby

Posts: 98; Member since: Nov 06, 2014

Dammit now I don't know who to believe...phonearena or the numerous comments against anti viruses :/

19. itsdeepak4u2000

Posts: 3718; Member since: Nov 03, 2012

I'm using CM Security and it's quiet good.

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