You can shield your smartphone against the most common types of malware, such as adware, spyware, and other online dangers, with the aid of free Android antivirus software. Are those free antivirus programs free, though?
Best Free Antivirus App For Android, you’ve probably seen apps that advertise being free but, once installed, demand payment for every feature.
We hope to demonstrate in this essay that malware protection need not be expensive or even at all.
To find out which one offers the finest security features for you, look through our list of the top free antivirus apps for Android.
Video: 5 Best Free Antivirus Apps For Android of 2022
10 Top Free Antivirus Programs For Android In 2022
We took care to choose programs that provide reliable security features, whether they come with a free plan or a potent trial. The list of the top free antivirus apps for Android in 2022 can be seen below.
1. Norton Mobile Security
In 2022, Norton Mobile Security will unquestionably remain my top Android antivirus app.
It provides more internet security protections and superior malware prevention than almost any rival, but it’s not free. However, depending on whether you purchase the standalone app or one of Norton’s advanced internet security suites, you may test out all of the company’s premium mobile features for a period of 14 days without charge or for a period of 60 days with a money-back guarantee.
Best Free Antivirus App For Android
Norton scans apps before you download them to your device to protect your Android phone from Bitdefender antivirus-free harmful apps and notifies you if the scanned apps include viruses or malware. Additionally, it examines every app already installed on your device and flags any that gather an excessive amount of sensitive data, consume an excessive amount of data or energy, or otherwise pose a risk to your device or data.
2. McAfee Security Free
One of the top Android antivirus programs is McAfee Security Free, which also has a great Wi-Fi scanner, an app privacy scanner, and advanced malware protection.
However, McAfee only provides a free 30-day trial for this subscription, during which you get access to all of the premium package’s features.
All of the apps you have downloaded and installed on your phone are listed in the app privacy scanner.
Although McAfee’s privacy scanner is a little less helpful, it is comparable to Norton’s on android devices.
In every test, the Wi-Fi scanner-which examines Wi-Fi networks for security-performed exceptionally well.
Every time I attempted to connect to an unprotected public network, it warned me so I could change to a secure network.
3. Avira Antivirus Security for Android
Along with a wide range of other protection features, Avira Antivirus Security for Android offers a great virus detection and eradication engine.
It’s one of the best options for novice users because it’s so simple to use. The free Android McAfee mobile security software has anti-theft security, a VPN, a data breach scanner, and other features in addition to an app privacy scanner.
Avira’s privacy scanner is really effective.
It examined every app on my device, just like Norton, and let me know which ones could access my contacts, photos, and browser history. While I discovered that some of the free games on my phone were actually collecting my data even when I wasn’t playing them, I was quite shocked.
Although Avira’s free plan is quite effective, it lacks anti-phishing security.
You must upgrade to Avira’s premium mobile software to gain anti-phishing protection and microphone and camera protection (not available on Android 10).
The free edition of TotalAV comes with a good selection of extra features and very effective online protection.
By attempting to access harmful websites, including confirmed phishing websites, on the Google Chrome browser app, I evaluated TotalAV’s web security. The way TotalAV stopped all of the dangerous links really amazed me.
Here are the other features that TotalAV provides without charge:
- WiFi tester
- data breach detection.
- safe web browser.
Although the data breach scanner performed admirably in my tests in avast mobile security-I entered my personal email address and discovered that it had been compromised in three separate data breaches-it is not nearly as sophisticated as Norton’s breach detection, which actively searches for all types of compromised data, including email addresses, home addresses, phone numbers, passports and ID cards, and more in play protect.
5. Bitdefender Mobile Security
The user-friendly Bitdefender Antivirus Free software has great malware detection.
In my tests, its one-tap antivirus scanner did a great job of locating and eliminating the majority of the malware I had previously downloaded on my phone. Only highly regarded programs like Norton performed a more thorough search and clean on my laptop.
The Bitdefender Antivirus Free app, however, just has a malware scanner and not many other capabilities, whereas the premium app has a number of remarkable features including online and phishing protection, data breach monitoring, and anti-theft measures.
The premium anti-theft measures offered by Bitdefender are excellent; should your phone be taken, you can remotely lock it, delete all of your data, find it on a map, and even snap a photo of the intruder.
6. Panda Dome Free Antivirus for Android
The majority of the functions of Panda Dome Free Antivirus for Android’s antivirus protection, anti-theft measures, app privacy scanner, and VPN can be controlled remotely from an Android Wear smartwatch!
The majority of malware samples were found by Panda’s real-time scanning, but fewer than by Norton or McAfee. While some samples were missed, I was pleased that it recognized all spyware and ransomware programs. I also appreciated that I received for best antivirus notifications on my smartwatch each time Panda discovered a new malware threat.
Panda also has anti-theft features like device lockdown, data erasure, and remote position tracking. But only the premium Android app, which is a component of Panda’s internet security suites, has its remote selfie camera and alert features.
7. Kaspersky Security Free
Because it just offers a few free functions, Kaspersky Security Free is a good free internet security app for Android phone users and is simple to use. When you install the program, all you have to do is enable a few permissions, then click the Scan button to scan your device for viruses.
Excellent on-demand malware detection is offered by Kaspersky.
It performed just as well as top competitors throughout my tests, catching the majority of the malware files, but regrettably it doesn’t offer real-time scanning like McAfee.
On the other hand, I appreciate that you can start scans from a smartwatch, but Panda Dome’s integration is superior to Kaspersky’s.
Additionally, it offers free anti-theft security that enables you to lock your phone and track it via the Kaspersky website, your smartwatch, or the Kaspersky desktop program. A selfie function, a remote alarm, and a remote data wipe are all included in the anti-theft capabilities.
8. Trend Micro Mobile Security
Although the free Android app from Trend Micro is quite limited, it contains a good malware scanner and a variety of other security tools, such as a Wi-Fi Checker.
In my test, the malware scanner performed admirably, enabling me to locate and remove nearly all of the malware in avg antivirus I had downloaded into various folders (its outcomes were roughly as effective at finding malware as other top brands on this list like Norton and Avira).
You can select authorized Wi-Fi networks, such as your home network or company’s network, using the Wi-Fi Checker, which also keeps an eye on the security of your Wi-Fi connection. A Social Network Privacy function is also available, which analyzes your privacy settings on websites like Facebook.
The free Android antivirus from Malwarebytes provides a few bonuses and a good malware detection rate.
The scanner successfully recognized over 95% of the malware I had downloaded to my phone before the tests, which is excellent (although rivals like Norton and Avira successfully caught 100% of malware in testing).
The scanner in Malwarebytes does a good job, however there aren’t many features in the free edition of the app.
It offers security auditing, which examines the system settings on your phone, an app manager, which lists all of the installed apps, and a privacy checker (which shows the types of access your apps have).
10. Sophos Intercept X for Mobile
A good virus scanner is included in Sophos Intercept X for mobile, and it supports regularly scheduled scans.
The antivirus scanner works really well and is simple to use despite having a lot of capabilities, although it isn’t quite as effective as some of the top competitors like Norton or Bitdefender. Having said that, Sophos’s web defense is superb; it successfully blocked almost all of the phishing websites I attempted to access.
How Can I Pick the Best Free Antivirus App for My Android?
When selecting a free Android antivirus app, you should exercise caution because it might not work properly or might even be designed to engage in dubious activities like data collection. You should do the following actions before downloading a free Android antivirus in Norton security:
- Test the app’s malware detection and removal capabilities. To make sure the antivirus programs I suggest are capable of detecting and removing all varieties of malware, I downloaded hundreds of malware files designed specifically for Android, dubious apps, and even ransomware files.
- Every dangerous software I attempted to download was detected by Norton’s malware scanner. A good app should have strong internet security features in app lock.
- To make sure these devices can defend Androids from the most recent web-based threats, I also examined internet security capabilities including anti-phishing defense and Wi-Fi scanners. Some antivirus apps for Android, including Norton, come with a VPN that encrypts your data with bank-grade security.
- Analyze the effect of the app on device performance. Nothing is worse than a security app that uses up all of your battery life and slows down your Android. I checked that every program I suggested could raise your security without damaging your phone or tablet.
- Check to see whether the app has any extra features. Android antivirus programs include helpful extras like app advisers, anti-theft protection, and other security features in addition to providing protection against Android malware. Each brand on this list has additional features that I evaluated to make sure they all function as intended and provide value to the product.
- Find a user-friendly app. To make sure that these apps’ functions are simple for all users to use and comprehend, I tested each functionality. The programs on this list are all well integrated with both Chrome OS and Android OS.
- Choose an app that provides complete access for free. I only suggest antivirus programs that include a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee, a free trial, or a 100% free plan, as the latter two at least allow you to test the program. While Norton offers a 14-day free trial and backs all purchases with a very generous 60-day money-back guarantee, I actually like Avira’s really free plan.
- Check to see if the program logs any data. Many free antivirus programs collect your data and sell it to advertising as a quick and unobtrusive (but unethical) way to recoup the cost of their free services. However, I can attest that each antivirus program on this list has procedures in place to ensure that they don’t record or sell your data; some, like Norton, even have a privacy monitor function that enables you to choose not to have your personal information collected by data broker websites.
- Try out a reasonably priced premium antivirus program. All free antivirus programs disable essential features, such as practical internet security measures like anti-phishing defense, web defense, app privacy scanners, parental controls, a VPN with unlimited bandwidth, and many others, behind a barrier. But if you upgrade to a paid plan, you’ll get access to all of them. I only suggest antiviral programs that have affordable pricing options, and each of my suggestions includes a money-back guarantee of at least 30 days.
The Drawbacks And Risks Of Free Android Antivirus
Free antivirus applications for Android smartphones are generally lacking in the security elements I look for in a top-notch internet security package, therefore I’m not a huge fan of utilizing them. Even the best free antivirus software for Android only offers a minimal set of capabilities.
For instance, most of the antivirus programs on this list offer malware scanners and app privacy scanners, but most of them lack essential functions like browser protection, anti-theft tools, and other things.
The finest free Android app available is provided by Avira and features real-time security, Wi-Fi scanning, anti-theft tools, an app privacy scanner, and a data breach scanner in addition to on-demand virus scanning. Avira is more of an outlier in terms of free antivirus software security features.
Android Antiviruses: Free vs. Paid
Top Android free antivirus programs like Avira provide helpful features like malware scanners, Wi-Fi scanners, and app privacy settings that can assist you in avoiding the most recent online hazards.
However, I don’t like how many of the essential functions part of their premium plans are unavailable to you while using free antivirus software. For instance, Avira’s free package lacks anti-phishing or microphone and camera security.
On the other hand, you may access various internet security features with the best-paid antivirus programs. My go-to Android antivirus app, Norton, has an industry-leading malware scanner, an intelligent firewall, anti-phishing protection, parental controls, a VPN with unlimited data, and a password manager.
By purchasing one of its LifeLock plans (only available in the US), you also get up to $1 million in identity theft reimbursement and credit monitoring from the major credit bureaus.
Malware no longer solely targets computers in modern times. Therefore, having at least the most fundamental security on your smartphone is necessary to protect your sensitive data and private information. Fortunately, there are trustworthy antivirus programs for Android that you can use without initially purchasing a membership.
With excellent scanning tools, free Android antivirus apps can quickly assist you in identifying the most common infections or even do automatic on-install scans for you. Thus, you would always have that additional level of protection. Some of them, such as TotalAV, can even give you additional security measures.