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To guard your Android tablet or smartphone against malware and corrupted applications You will require one of the most effective Android antivirus apps.
The options are limitless. The top Android antivirus programs provide more than top-quality malware prevention and detection. They also offer the option of privacy and antitheft. The majority of applications offer a free version and some have a completely free version.
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Android antivirus programs that are among the top ones can back up your contacts as well as track your tablet’s location via GPS. They can also take photos or capture a photo of a thief on your smartphone and then use the Wear OS smartwatch to track your position.
We’ve gathered the most well-known mobile antivirus companies — Avast. Bitdefender. Kaspersky. Lookout. McAfee. Norton. Even Google. We have rated their Android apps based on their interface, setup, and usability.
For assessing security using data provided by the AV-Test. This independent German lab tests security applications by their capability of detaching malware that is not a zero-day threat. Geekbench 4 was also used to assess the effect of these applications on the overall Android performance.
What Android antivirus applications are the most effective?
Based on our research, Bitdefender antivirus for mobile devices ($15 per year) is the most effective Android antivirus app. It offers nearly perfect security against malware and comes with many options.
Norton Mobile Security is $15 per year and offers more security. Norton Mobile Security has been removed from the free version, together with its anti-theft and anti-theft features. We can do not recommend it anymore.
McAfee Mobile Security, Avast Mobile Security along McAfee Mobile Security provide a range of features that are at no cost and have performed very well in a malware detection test. Avast’s antitheft, call blocker, and theft tools didn’t perform well. The apps also display many advertisements, except when they’re paid.
Kaspersky’s Mobile Antivirus Free Edition has no advertisements. The call-blocking and anti-theft features are superb. It provides excellent malware protection but doesn’t provide a WiFi security scanner for the network.
Lookout Security & Antivirus was the first mobile antivirus application and provides a powerful identity protection feature. Unfortunately, we don’t have any third-party lab-test information to determine Lookout Security & Antivirus’s effectiveness against malware.
Google Play Protect happens to be the most recent of the applications Android phones use. Unfortunately, it isn’t able to protect you from malware. It’s better to install a different application.
The top Android antivirus software provides not just the best malware detection and prevention but also provides a broad variety of privacy and anti-theft security options. They are able to track your Android tablet or smartphone using GPS and take a photo using cameras of burglars. Also, they have the capability to make use of Google Wear as a Google Wear smartwatch in order to track your device.
To guard yourself against malware that is not available on other platforms, check out our web pages on the best security software for your computer.
Find out more about: Keep your data safe by using the best Android VPN Software
The most effective Android antivirus app.
Bitdefender Mobile Security
Price per annum: $15.
Minimum Android support: 5.0 Lollipop
App lock: Yes
Anti-theft is a Yes
Reasons to Buy
Top malware protection+Affordable premium version+Many useful features+Small system impact
There are many reasons to be cautious about
-Expensive unlimited VPN option
Bitdefender’s Android security program offers nearly 100% malware protection, with minimal impact on performance, Android Wear watches integration, VPN client, and an untrusted blocker of websites. It works with the majority of Android internet browsers.
It also comes with powerful privacy-protection tools, such as App Lock, WiFi scanner security features, anti-theft, and alerts about data breaches.
It is a Bitdefender Mobile Security that offers a 14-day trial, however, it’s not an application that is free. Bitdefender Antivirus Free for Android (which is truly free) checks for malware.
The VPN client comes with 200MB of data. This is enough to access your email when you are outside of the country. Additional data costs an additional $7/month.
Bitdefender Mobile Security is only $15 per year, which is worth the price. It is our most-loved Android antivirus application.
Our complete Bitdefender Mobile Security analysis is accessible here.
|Avast Mobile Security||Bitdefender Mobile Security||Google Play Protect||Kaspersky Mobile Antivirus||Lookout Security & Antivirus||McAfee Mobile Security||Norton Mobile Security for Android|
|Price per year||Free; $12; $24||$15||Free||Free; $15||Free; $30; $100||Free; $30; $80||$30|
|Minimum Android support||5.0 Lollipop||5.0 Lollipop||4.4 Kit Kat||5.0 Lollipop||5.0 Lollipop||7.0 Nougat||6.0 Marshmallow|
|Ads||Free version||No||No||No||No||Free version||No|
|App lock||Premium only||Yes||Yes||Premium only||No||Discontinued||No|
|Anti-theft||Partly premium||Yes||Yes||Yes||Partly premium||Discontinued||No|
|App advisor||Yes||Yes||No||No||Partly premium||Yes||Yes|
|URL screener||Yes||Yes||Yes||Premium only||Premium only||Premium only||Yes|
|Wi-Fi scanner||Yes||Yes||No||No||Premium only||Yes||Yes|
|VPN||Costs extra||Unlimited data costs extra||No||No||Premium only||Costs extra||No|
|Wear OS support||No||Yes||No||Yes||No||Yes||No|
The reason you should choose an Android antivirus application
To ensure that your Android device secures it is recommended to keep the software up to date. Every new version of Android is more secure than the version before, and every month, an Android security update corrects new flaws.
If you don’t have a Google Pixel or Android One phone, you’ll be unable to get these updates and upgrades immediately. Many device makers need time to ensure that the changes made to Android do not cause damage to their software or devices.
The time lag can be as little as a few weeks, but it could be a long time. Even more troubling, certain Android handsets stop receiving Android OS upgrades after two years, while some do not receive monthly security updates in any way.
This is where the most effective Android antivirus applications are able to help. They block attacks trying to bypass the built-in security of Android, particularly ones that Google has patched but your device does not yet (or haven’t yet) have. They also block new threats which Google Play Protect won’t catch even on Pixel phones.
How do you choose the most effective Android antivirus app for your needs
Android antivirus applications are available in three pricing options: free, paid for and freemium.
Freemium applications let you pick between a few features of features free of charge or by paying for an upgraded version that offers you the entire range of features that are available in fully-priced applications. Apps that give you a variety of features at no cost could also present many ads.
This could be a combination of anti-theft features such as the “advisor” to help you look over and select applications, a Wi-Fi network security scanner, and apps that require a password to access certain applications.
Paid apps, as well as premium tiers, typically cost between $15 and $30 per calendar year. Certain app developers try to limit the number of devices you can use in their premium or paid versions. Some tack on a super-premium tier that gives you unlimited VPN service or an identity-protection service, often at a pretty good price.
The most important aspect in deciding what Android antivirus program to use is the protection against malware.
Norton and Bitdefender have the upper hand in this area Bitdefender and Norton lead the pack, while Kaspersky isn’t far from the top. Avast is decent, but not the best, and Google Play Protect, which is built into the app, is not a good choice. We’re not confident about Lookout as well as 360 Security because they haven’t presented their apps to laboratory tests.
What we tried to test the best Android antivirus applications
To assess the security features of the top Android antivirus applications We used the most recent bimonthly tests from the AV-TEST which is an independent laboratory located in Germany which measures the degree to which the top Android security applications detect the zero-day threat of malware and other threats.
Since scores for some apps differ between one test and another, we examined the last two years of tests.
We also used some of the results from the AV-Comparatives which is a lab located in Austria which once per year, tests all Android antivirus applications available on Google Play, even those which don’t cooperate with labs that test. These tests aren’t very precise.
To determine the effect that antivirus programs impact overall performance, we tested test the Geekbench 4 benchmarking app on the Google Pixel 3 phone running Android 9.0 Pie. For each application, we ran Geekbench repeatedly without having an antivirus app installed and then using either of these review applications installed, and then during the entire scan.
We also assessed the quantity and value of each app’s features. We also noted what features were only available to premium users. We also evaluated the interface for users and the installation procedure.
Kaspersky antivirus software has been excluded by U.S. government networks. Since this company’s name is Russian and its software is Russian, it could present a significant risk to individuals and companies that are involved in national security as well as critical infrastructure.
We do believe, however, that Kaspersky software is safe for users at home. We haven’t seen any evidence to support this. Kaspersky researchers are well-known in the world of antivirus, as well as the firm has publically disclosed Russian cyberespionage operations in addition to American ones.
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Paul Wagenseil is a senior editor at Tom’s Guide focused on security and privacy. He’s also a fry cook, dishwasher long-haul driver monkey, and video editor. He’s been exploring the field of information security for over 15 years with FoxNews.com, SecurityNewsDaily, TechNewsDaily, and Tom’s Guide has presented talks at the ShmooCon, DerbyCon, and BSides Las Vegas hacker conferences, appearing in various TV news ads and was a moderator during the CEDIA home-technology conference. Follow his blog posts through Twitter on Twitter at his handle: @snd_wagenseil.