Smartphones are now equipped with a range of functions that puts some old PCs in the shade, at least in terms of computing power. With the increasing popularity, however, so do the attacks on such devices. We looked into the question of how useful a virus scanner is for Android and iPhone.
If the iPhone or Android smartphone suddenly develops a strange life of its own, you should take a closer look.
Because viruses and other malware have long since stopped short of their little companions. Various malware programs have been romping around the network for years.
Once your smartphone is infected, good advice is expensive. Especially since criminals fixate more and more on mobile devices. The PC does not disappear completely from view, but it takes an increasingly lesser position.
The reason for this is simple: while a PC is often used stationary, a smartphone is constantly in motion. This fact makes it possible to gain access to other smartphones. Bluetooth and Co. are entry points here. Appropriate security gaps are of course assumed.
Does virus protection make sense for iPhone and Android?
It is not easy to answer whether you need a virus program for your iPhone or Android smartphone. Basically, you first have to differentiate between the two systems, as they are fundamentally different.
On the one hand, there is Apple’s iOS. A closed source code and an overall closed system make it difficult for attackers to exploit any security gaps in the iPhone.
Accordingly, the risk of infection with an iPhone is significantly lower. The situation is different with iPhones that have been jailbroken. These devices inevitably create gaps that an attacker can use.
One of the first malicious applications for the iPhone could only reach its maximum through a jailbreak. As long as your iPhone has not been jailbroken, you are still on the safe side and have little to worry about malware. Accordingly, an antivirus program is only useful to a limited extent.
On the other side of the coin is Google’s Android operating system. The open-source code gives everyone a deep insight into how the mobile operating system works.
This group of people inevitably also includes criminals who want to exploit security gaps for their own purposes.
This factor may seem gigantic at first glance, but it is put into perspective when you consider a second aspect: a large number of developers work with this open-source system every day. Accordingly, security gaps are usually found quickly and rectified even more quickly.
However, there is no absolute security here either. Regrettably, however, Android is still the number 1 target system for criminals when it comes to attacks on a smartphone.
When do I need virus protection for my iPhone or Android?
There are a few situations when virus protection for your smartphone is sure to become essential. These include, for example, iPhones with a jailbreak, as they are simply more susceptible to attackers.
You should also use virus protection if you carry out regular and, above all, various transfers to and from your device. You don’t always have to smuggle in the attacker yourself. Another smartphone that you connect to can also become a culprit.
Which app offers me good virus protection?
The app market is filled with programs that supposedly offer you the best virus protection available. Various magazines and security companies have already scrutinized such apps.
The conclusion was often devastating: Only a fraction of the apps even recognize viruses on the smartphone.
So that you don’t experience a fiasco, we present some apps below that were rated “very good” in various tests and have an excellent recognition rate:
- F-Secure Mobile Security: This F-Secure app is designed for Android, Symbian, and Windows Mobile. It effectively protects your smartphone as well as your tablet against viruses and also enables the locking and remote wiping of a lost or stolen device. An annual license for the app is available for around 30 euros.
- Kaspersky Mobile Security Lite: With Mobile Security Lite, Kaspersky offers a free virus protection app for your Android smartphone. Already during the download, you will be warned if malware tries to infiltrate it. The problem with the Lite version: A subsequent scan of the device is not possible. So once the malware is on your device, you won’t find out.
- avast! Mobile Security: The security solution from avast! Also comes completely free of charge and shines with an extensive range of functions. On the other hand, the detection rate is slightly lower than with the apps from F-Secure and Kaspersky. In addition, the app is designed exclusively for Android devices.
- AVG Antivirus Free: AVG also offers Antivirus Free, a free app for Android smartphones. However, the recognition rate of the software is not as good as with the aforementioned offers.
- McAfee Enterprise Mobility Management: McAfee is one of the providers who provide virus protection for the iPhone in the app store. The closed system makes it possible to argue about the benefits of such an application for iPhone & iPad. If you want to be on the safe side, however, you will find a suitable app here.
How to keep your iPhone and Android smartphone clean
No matter if iPhone or Android. There are a few simple tips you can use to secure your system against a variety of threats:
- Check your operating system regularly for firmware updates and apply them.
- Only download apps from trusted sources.
- Avoid jailbreaking if possible.
- Do not open any short messages (MMS, SMS) from unknown senders