Gadgets like tablets, iPads and smartphones have become our main mediums of communication and for storing sensitive information. This is why criminals and hackers around the world are doing all they can to slip viruses into smartphones and tablets to steal sensitive information and data.
Android handsets, just like any other smartphone, are vulnerable to such threats. Viruses in Android phones are becoming harder to detect for the average smartphone user who pays little, if any, attention to security. Fortunately, most virus creators are not rocket scientists, and users do not have to be computer experts to combat them.
Following are some reasons why your Android phone gets viruses and how you can close the tap on this problem for good.
Don’t install an app if you’re not sure about it
Smartphone users should treat their apps like they treat their food. You won’t put a morsel into your mouth if you’re not sure of its hygiene and edibility. Similarly, if you don’t know the purpose of an app or where it came from, you might want to think twice before installing it.
It’s not all that rare to get an e-mail with links to an app — but it is advised not to install full apk files (that’s the file type for Android applications) you receive in email, and for that matter, any link or app recommended through an anonymous email.
Only install from Google Play or other trusted app stores
One of the main reasons why Android phones get viruses is because smartphone users install an app from third-party app stores. For example, where would you like to buy your meat from? Would you prefer buying it from a tent on the side of the road, or from the refrigerated case at the grocery store? Trust me, your chances of getting sick will decrease if you buy from a grocery store that is trusted.
But what if you like an app on a third-party store and want it? Amazon App store is the only other third party store that can be trusted. Although you may find similar apps on both Amazon Appstore and Google Play, you can always download from this platform knowing that your phone is secure.
The best thing about Amazon is that it’s always running deals on apps. Similarly, avoid downloading apps from any random website or page on the Internet. Any page that promises to give away numerous paid apps for free, instead of offering deals of the day/ week should not be trusted.
Use a virus scanner to avoid viruses and malware
Most of you would agree that prevention is better than cure. Although Google scans just about everything that goes through Google Play and also has the ability to verify apps that you have side loaded to your phone, it’s always better to take some safety measures yourself.
There have been a few cases of fake antivirus apps being purchased off Google Play. (Just an exception and not the norm.) Therefore, it is always good to be on the cautious side.
How to avoid getting viruses
By now, you should be aware of how essential it is to protect your gadgets like computers, laptops, tablets, and smartphones from viruses, but many Android phone operators don’t realize that their devices need protection too.
The smartphone is essentially a pocket-sized computer that holds your personal data, important documents, and other files. If a virus invades your phone, it can fatally damage your device or steal private information, such as your passwords, credit card numbers, and bank account details. By taking a few necessary precautions, you can avoid and protect your phone from viruses and other digital hazards.
Also, note the following points:
Make sure to stay away from malicious content when accessing the Internet on your phone. Viruses can be installed on your phone if you log onto suspicious websites. If you receive an unknown email or text message with a link to it, don’t click the link. It may lead you to a virus-infected website.
- It remains true even if the email or text appears to have been sent by a friend or a genuine business, such as a retailer or bank.
- To safeguard your Android phone from being infected, install an app or file only if it comes from a reliable source, such as your phone’s actual app store or any other trustworthy source like Amazon. Downloading apps from unsecured websites may put your phone at risk.
- You can also check reviews available in scroll down sections from different users and that how this app is handling real life situations, many companies used this technique to benchmark their products such as AT&T, AirG, Sprint and many others.
- Avoid making unnecessary changes to your handset. Modifying your phone in ways that weren’t meant to be by the manufacturer can also invite viruses to your phone. This modification, also known as’ jailbreaking’, makes it easier for viruses to slip into the device.
- Free wireless connections always tempt you to connect. However, you must avoid connecting your phone to unsecured wifi networks. Since these networks are free of cost and are unsecured, they don’t need a password to join and anyone can connect to your device and infect it with a virus without you knowing about it.
- Always encrypt the files and data saved on the phone. Some Android phones have built-in data encryption that protects your data from prying eyes. Encryption usually safeguards documents, contact numbers, calendars, media files and email attachments. It also works for data stored on the phone’s memory card or SD card.
There is no denying that Android is an awesome device, but by acting in irresponsible ways you can put sensitive information at risk. However, it is very easy to safeguard your device against malicious content and viruses by being just a little on the cautious side.