About Android virus
Android virus refers to viruses that affect devices running Android. There is a large variety of different infections that can affect Android, ranging from ones that display intrusive ads to ones that hijack devices and steal data. Over the years, Android viruses have become quite sophisticated, posing as much threat as their computer counterparts. They can encrypt files, lock screens, show ads, steal data, delete files, record keystrokes and much more.
Android viruses usually come to devices disguised as useful apps which users install themselves. While the majority of them are downloaded from third-party app stores, some may be obtained even from Google Play Store. The fact is, most users download the Android viruses themselves.
It is important to uninstall Android virus as soon possible because they can do serious damage. Usually, you will need to use anti-malware software to get rid of them. Without those programs, you might not even notice the virus on your device.
How do viruses enter Android devices
Generally, users end up with viruses on their Androids when they install apps, both from third-party app stores and Google Play Store. Third-party app stores are usually not monitored well, which means many malicious apps are hosted on them. If you are someone who does download apps from non-official stores, you need to be extra careful. Before downloading, always look into the app, research the developer, check reviews and the app’s reputation, question why it needs the permissions it asks for, etc. It the app raises any red flags, do not install it.
Unfortunately, you might end up with a malicious app even if you download it from the Play Store. While Google has various security measures to prevent malicious apps from being hosted, it is not always able to protect users. Malicious app developers come up with different ways to trick Google’s checks, which allows those apps to be downloaded thousands and even millions of times. Despite all this, the Play Store is still the safest platform to download apps from. As long as you research apps before installing them, you should prevent a lot of viruses from getting into your Android device.
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Another way viruses can get into your Android smartphone or tablet is via spam emails. If you open a spam email with a malicious attachment, the malware would be allowed to initiate on your device. It is recommended to not open spam emails, particularly their attachments.
What do Android viruses do
Android virus functionality depends on which malware you are dealing with. If you have an adware app, you will start seeing advertisements everywhere. Ads on smartphones and tablets are much more annoying than on computers because they are displayed full screen. Some ads may even appear on your lockscreen. Furthermore, adware apps can sometimes hide themselves, making it that much more difficult to find the app responsible.
When installing apps, one of the main things you need to be careful about is what permissions you give the app. When reviewing the app permission list, always wonder why the app needs them. If a flashlight or a game app require permission to access your SMS, photos, contacts, etc., that is very suspicious as those apps do not need said permissions to function. Some malicious app may request access to your SMS and then subscribe you to premium services, for which you would need to pay a large bill.
There are Android viruses that may lock your screen and demand a ransom to unlock it. For example, the Android Police Virus would lock your screen and pretend to be law enforcement. It would accuse you of violating the law and threaten you with jail time, unless you would be willing to pay the fine. Obviously this is all a scam and no payments are necessary.
More serious Android viruses may encrypt files and take them for hostage, or delete them entirely. These are pretty severe infections because they could lead to permanent file loss.
Another type of Android virus could be spying on you, tracking what you do and logging your login credentials. Such malware could steal highly valuable information, including online bank login credentials.
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Android virus removal
The easiest way to remove Android virus would be to use anti-virus programs. Many reliable desktop anti-virus programs have Android versions so you have plenty of options to choose from. If you engage in any kind of risky behaviour, you should have anti-virus apps monitoring your device at all times. It is possible to delete Android virus manually but it depends on which virus you are dealing with.