Smartphones have become a necessity in our daily lives – for shopping, banking, making payments, and so on.
Safety is a primary concern while we store our personal and financial information on mobile devices, making us vulnerable to hacking and other online threats. These vulnerabilities mainly arise due to a lack of security updates.
Google has announced in July 2023 that only Android version 10 and above will receive security patches going forward. Below is the distribution of Android versions used worldwide.
More than 25% of the Android versions will not receive security patches. There are more than 2.3 billion Android users in the world, which means at least half a million Android users are vulnerable.
The following apps will help you to protect your Android devices from online identity & security threats.
Avast Mobile Security
Avast is a great app to provide your Android phone protection against viruses coupled with many other threats.
Avast is one of the world’s most trusted free antivirus for Android, which alerts you when spyware, adware get installed and violate your privacy.
The detection rate of the latest Android malware is about 99.9% and is around 100% of malware detected in the last four weeks.
Verdict: If malware and safe browsing are your primary concern, this app is appropriate for you.
Safeguard your Android devices from ransomware, malware, and other threats using the advanced protection of Malwarebytes.
It can efficiently detect dangerous threats and remove them before your device gets compromised. Malwarebytes offers real-time shields and scans for even the sophisticated phishing URLs while you use the Chrome browser. It also alerts you in case it detects anything suspicious to ensure a safe browsing experience.
The application conducts periodic privacy audits by identifying access permissions of your apps installed on your phone or tablet. You can track those apps tracking your location, costing you hidden fees, or monitoring your calls. Malwarebytes can quickly search all your files for malware and potentially harmful programs, including adware, screen lockers, etc.
It supports Android versions 6.0 or higher and languages like English, French, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Dutch, German, Indonesian, Polish, and Portuguese.
Want to try out?
Malwarebytes offers a 30-day free trial with all the premium features. You can buy its starting plan for $3.33/month for one device, or choose a higher plan for more devices.
Kaspersky Security and VPN
For good reasons, Kaspersky is a well-known name in the cybersecurity space. This free-to-download app has excellent features to keep you safe in this ever-dangerous digital territory.
Real-time malware protection
Remote wipe & Find My Device
Safe browsing and messaging
Virtual private network, etc.
In addition, you get a breach alert to tell if your personally identifiable information is leaked. Besides, it also pings you when a new device connects to your WiFi network.
Overall, it provides Kaspersky 360-degree protection in a freemium package which is definitely worth considering.
Norton 360 mobile security covers all bases to offer complete peace of mind. It helps you fight against online threats with its malware detection, advert blocker, WiFi analyzer, etc.
Following the trend, Norton mobile security also has a built-in VPN to encrypt all the network traffic.
Additionally, you get powerful phishing detectors indicating risky links in text messages, emails, and apps. Likewise, it identifies your personal information leaks over the dark web.
You can check this and more with its 14-day premium trial.
McAfee packs a capable cybersecurity suite to become the guardian of your smartphone.
The subscriptions of McAfee come in two flavors which basically differ in their identity protection module and a few advanced features you can check in their 7-day free trial.
AVG Antivirus & Security
AVG is another freemium mobile security solution with a decently powerful free version. Its paid subscription is frequently dubbed as ‘well worth’ by its enormous user base.
In addition to this long list of features, you also get an app usage tracker, breach alert, junk cleaner, etc.
You can expect similarities among Avast, Norton, and AVG mobile security, as all of these work under the same parent company.
Overall, it promises a lot to be ignored, and its powerful free subscription makes it a must-try security application.
ESET Mobile Security
ESET comes loaded with the best features to help you stay secure, and you can try its premium package for 30 days without paying a penny.
Online payment protection
Scheduled scans, etc.
Among these, ESET antivirus, real-time scanning, security report, activity log, etc., are free features.
A paid subscription is clearly more potent with the advanced protection for 5-devices per plan.
Bitdefender Mobile Security
A critically acclaimed security product, Bitdefender offers a free premium trial for the first 14 days.
It boasts of:
In addition to your Android smartphone, Bitdefender also protects Android wear devices. Besides, its autopilot mode recommends security actions based on usage.
Overall, Bitdefender has a solid premium subscription and a capable free plan anyone can take benefit of.
There’s no better feeling than browsing without fear, and Firefox Focus helps you achieve just that. It’s an amazing browser that blocks a wide range of trackers while also erasing your history, passwords, and cookies.
As a result of blocking unwanted ads and trackers, you’ll be able to browse a lot faster. Since this app is powered by Mozilla, it’s completely free and gives you the basic right of browsing privately. 🙂
Sophos is one of the best antivirus apps one could have on Android at an absolutely no cost.
Its user interface may not impress you much. However, its features will surely soothe your mind.
Virus scanning of installed apps, existing apps, and storage media
Loss and theft protection with the support of remote access which allows the user to wipe, lock, ring, and locate your device.
Sophos boasts the latest malware detection rate of 100%, which helps it to stand out from the rest.
It ensures your calls in such a way that nobody can listen to them. Secure Call provides end to end encryption for your private calls, thus preventing them from being overheard by intruders.
It uses a default phone app to make and receive phone calls. Its Peer to Peer architecture with a robust end to end encryption prevents your calls being stolen by Third parties, including the developers of this app.
Verdict: If you want an end to end encryption for phone calls, use Secure Call.
Find My Device
Find My Device is an improved Android Device Manager that allows you to ring, find, lock your Android device remotely. It also allows you to wipe the device’s entire data if it, by any chance it gets permanently out of your reach.
Many other apps offer this service with its other flagship services.
However, Google is by far the easiest to set up and allows you to log in via someone else Android device manager and wipe data from your device on the go.
Verdict: If you want to access your phone remotely, use Andriod Device Manager.
Many apps on your Android device might be using and eating up your mobile data unnecessarily.
NoRoot Firewall puts you in control of Internet access for apps without rooting your device. It allows us to choose whether a particular app can access the Internet only over wifi or only over mobile data or neither or both.
Orbot is an Android application, a part of the Tor project, which allows you to route all of your traffic through the Tor network.
VPN uses a single server, whereas Tor routes your traffic through various tunnels making sure no traces are left behind. Orbot creates a genuinely private mobile data connection. Data gets encrypted and re-encrypted
Data gets encrypted and re-encrypted multiple numbers of times until it reaches the last network where it gets decrypted, thus preventing the sender from being traced.
I hope the above security-specific apps help you keep your Android mobile/devices safe and secure. Next, check out some of the best Antivirus for Android and use these private web browsers to ensure online privacy.