Why install antivirus on Android smartphones

From malicious apps to surfing the Web to email scams. Here are the reasons why we should install an antivirus on our smartphone

Almost everyone uses an antivirus on their home computer, and for good reason. To protect us from hackers and to protect our computer security. But on the Android smartphone, is it worth having an antivirus? Let's see what risks we run if we don't protect our phone from viruses.

Among the reasons that drive consumers to buy an iPhone over a smartphone with Android operating system there is definitely computer security. iOS, in fact, has historically been portrayed as a system with fewer risks than the one created by Google. Malicious applications, backdoors and trojans. Life without an antivirus with an Android smartphone seems to be a nightmare. In recent times Google has been working to fix many vulnerabilities in the system and on the Play Store. But all this may not be enough.

Is Android really at risk?

Let's start with one consideration: so far the number of infected Android devices is infinitely smaller than the number of notebooks, PCs and computers targeted by hackers. However, this does not mean that we are safe. Android tablets and smartphones are anything but invulnerable. Cyber criminals have recently started to focus more on mobile devices than in the past. And especially on applications, which are mostly developed in an insecure way. The greatest danger when using an Android smartphone is still surfing the Internet. And here the most dangerous virus of recent times seems to be the Obad trojan. This is considered to be the most dangerous malware ever recorded on mobile devices. And then smartphone ransomware should not be underestimated.

iOS more secure than Android

We often hear that Apple and especially its iOS devices are immune to hacker attacks. This is an absolutely false belief. The truth is that Cupertino's devices have more closed systems, where it is more difficult for cyber criminals to attack. But several cases of infections and scams have been recorded even against iPhone or iPad users. Android being an open system however is easier for hackers to sabotage. So in this sense yes it is less secure than iOS.

Google and the problems on Play Store

Do we have to be afraid to use the Play Store on Android because of the continuous discovery of malicious apps? The answer is no, but we must constantly pay attention to what we decide to download and install on our smartphone. We then avoid installing unofficial apps and so on. Google has announced that it has eliminated all spybots and malicious apps from its Store thanks to special filters. We know, however, that this system is not 100% infallible, so prevention is always better than cure. Before installing the app, let's take a look at its positive or negative comments, the number of downloads and let's carefully check the permissions it requires. We should also look at the name of the company that developed the app and check the website to see if it matches what's on it.

Threats without antivirus

Now that we've reached this point, we need to ask ourselves a question: what real risks do we run by not using an antivirus on our Android smartphone? First of all, the first threat is the theft or monitoring of our personal data. Then there have been cases of applications that corrupt all the files on a phone and others that damage the battery and its proper functioning. We must consider that often our smartphones contain more confidential information even than a computer. Especially if we don't use the PC for work but only to play games or surf the web. How do hackers get to infect our phone? The techniques used are very similar to those also used on various computers. First, through a malicious application installed. Or through malware on a website. But also with infected links in emails. But the Internet is not the only risk. Even infrared and Bluetooth can be tools used by cyber criminals to infect our mobile device. Moreover, infecting a smartphone is faster and easier than infecting a PC.

Risks of having an antivirus

The main criticism users make of Android antivirus is that it requires too many permissions. That is, to protect us from viruses they take possession of all our data. In short, you have to trust them enough before accepting all these permissions for the first time. In addition, many antivirus are always running in the background, which results in a huge battery drain. Moreover, they are often paid, especially the most efficient ones. While the free ones are very likely to not protect us from all existing malware.

What antivirus to choose on Android

Choosing an antivirus is not easy. You have to do it according to your needs and availability. Three of the most recommended ones are Avast Mobile Security & Antivirus, AVG Mobile (which works on both Android smartphones and tablets) and Avira Antivirus Security. Before choosing one however it is advisable to try at least a couple of them. This is to note based on your smartphone usage which one is your favorite. And also to understand which antivirus consumes less battery power in compatibility with your phone.