Technology can make your life a lot easier but it also comes with a number of vulnerabilities. Smart devices of the modern world like computers, tablets, smartphones, etc use programming languages and codes to perform a task. An experienced hacker can easily find a flaw in these codes and steal private information of a user.

As smartphones are becoming more popular, people are getting quite curious about how safe these devices are when it comes to protecting personal information.

► An Antivirus App- Do You Really Need It?

Many experts suggest that antivirus apps are not necessary for smartphones. Well, they are right but only to an extent.

No operating system or platform in the world is safe. Virus can be created for any code-based program. The thing that makes mobile phones a bit safer is their closed environment. Both Android and iOS platforms have their own official stores. These stores have a flawless mechanism of testing an app and finding vulnerabilities, which is why you will never find an infected app either on the Play Store or on the App Store.

I would like to point out though these mobile platforms can still get infected. Android smartphones are more vulnerable than iOS ones because they allow users to install apps from outside the Play Store.

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At the end, it all comes down to how you use a smartphone. If you have rooted it (or Jailbreaked) and install apps from outside the store then it would be a good idea to install an antivirus program.

► Essential features of an ideal smartphone antivirus

  • Should be updated frequently
  • Only install an antivirus app that has good reviews
  • Try to go for well-known apps
  • Integrated extra features like theft protection and performance optimizer
  • Should be light on the processor

► 360 Security – Antivirus Boost (Free)

No matter what type of user you are, the 360 Security antivirus app will always keep your data safe. It is the best anti-virus application I can recommend. The developer of the app pushes regular updates to make it resistant to new viruses. It is capable of removing viruses, malware, adware and Trojan from smartphones.

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This application also comes with a number of built-in features. Real-time protection is something many users will appreciate. Once installed, it will keep looking for viruses and delete them on the first contact. The app also offers a Junk File cleaner for clearing the cache memory and improving performance. Anti-theft protection and power saver are among the other useful features of the 360 Security app.

► AVAST Mobile Security (Free With In-app Purchases)

Avast is a popular name in the anti-virus market. Many PC users around the world trust this brand for keeping their data safe. Its mobile app has already crossed more than 100 million installs.

The best thing about Avast is it keeps its database updated. In addition to real-time protection and device scanning, this application also comes equipped with a built-in web shield plugin, which will keep users safe on the internet. One can also use the Avast Mobile Security app to block phone numbers. App locking adds another layer of security to the phone.

► Avira Antivirus Security (Free With In-app Purchases)

In a market where only big players rule, Avira has become a well-known antivirus app in a very short time span. The main benefit of installing this application is it tries to give an integrated solution to all your security needs.

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It not only offers virus and anti-theft protection but also a set of recovery tools. In the case of theft, owner of the phone can easily lock it. All the controls remain accessible to users via a web-based interface.

The premium version of the Avira Antivirus Security will provide protection from phishing, infected websites, and malware.

► AVG Antivirus Security (Free and In-app Purchases)

AVG is in the mobile antivirus business since a really long time. Over the years, the developer has improved this app in a number of aspects and today it is one of the best antivirus programs you can install.

This application provides a simple and easy to understand interface. All the features become available just after the splash screen with a scan button up top.

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It flaunts all the security features you can possibly think like privacy protection, virus removal, performance tuning and anti-theft. However, some of these features come with a 30 days trial.

► Norton Security & Antivirus (Free and In-app Purchases)

Almost every computer owner has heard of Norton. It is a company that makes a top of the line Antivirus programs.

The Norton smartphone app is quite powerful when it comes to scanning viruses. It notifies the user within the Play Store if there is even a slight chance of an app having some vulnerability.

Moreover, users get the ability to control the security settings of all smartphones and tablets they have using Norton’s website. This app even removes infected websites from search results. Norton is even offering a 30-day trial of its premium features.

► Essential Tips for Smartphone Software Security

In the end, I would like to give some tips on how a user can keep his or her smartphone safe without even installing any of the above-mentioned apps.

  1. Do not install apps from unknown sources.
  2. Even if you are installing an app from the Play Store or App Store, be sure to check for the reviews and ratings of that particular app.
  3. Avoid connecting your smartphone with computers of Cyber Cafes.
  4. Do not connect to an open Wi-Fi network unless you are sure it is safe.
  5. Only download files from reputable sources.
  6. Stay away from websites that provide free stuff.