Best Antivirus for Android | Top 6 Reviewed for 2023

Are you searching for the best antivirus for your Android device? Are you worried about new and emerging threats? Your Android device got infected with a virus or otherwise malicious software, and you need to make sure it’s gone, but can’t decide which antivirus to get? We’ve got you covered.

We’re here to help you make a more informed decision. We’ve reviewed and compared various antivirus software for Android, whether for personal use, business use, or even for your family. We’ve ranked our list of the best Android antiviruses based on criteria like pricing, features, performance, and ease of use. Find out how providers like TotalAV, McAfee, and Norton can help keep your Android devices secure.

Top 6 Android Antivirus Apps Ranked

To help you with the process of making your decision, we’ve compiled the top 6 antivirus services for Android down below:

  1. TotalAV — Overall, the best antivirus for Android. TotalAV has an easy-to-use interface and offers constant protection against phishing and ransomware, as well as a VPN for extra security.
  2. McAfee — A well-known antivirus with a long history, McAfee offers a VPN in its base plan, provides a strong firewall, and has lightning-fast scan times for malware threats.
  3. Norton — Top antivirus software that offers 24/7 support and has its own VPN. Norton’s LifeLock tool is the ultimate protection against identity theft.
  4. Avast — A powerful antivirus for Android, Avast offers fast responses to threats, an encrypted photo vault, and strong web security with its Web Shield 2.0.
  5. Nord Threat Protection — Strong antivirus software that comes with the top-rated NordVPN. It provides excellent security features including a tracker and ad blocker.
  6. SurfsharkAV — Lightweight antivirus software using real-time threat detection. SurfsharkAV offers a content blocker, a data breach monitor, and its own VPN.

Best Antivirus for Android Smartphones | Top 6 Reviewed

Before we compare each of our top 6 head-to-head, here are in-depth reviews of each one to help you pinpoint the one best suited to your needs.

1. TotalAV — The Best Overall Antivirus Provider for Android

TotalAV is the first provider and our top pick for the best antivirus software for Android. It’s a premier antivirus provider, offering superb protection, high performance, and an easy-to-use interface at a bargain. TotalAV also features a free version, albeit with limited features.

TotalAV | Best antivirus for Android

Cheapest Plan Best Features Free Trial/Money-Back Guarantee Max Devices Supported Automatic Updates Auto-Clean
$29 1. Robust Android app

2. Abundance of peripherals

3. Protects your critical applications

30-Days 6 Yes Yes

According to our research, TotalAV provides some of the best protection out of any antivirus available on the Android platform.

In an ecosystem where new viruses and threats emerge every moment, it constantly updates its threat definitions and comes up with countermeasures to keep your devices secure.

With ransomware and phishing scam protection, TotalAV ensures that every base is covered completely.  It’s also one of the best Android VPNs as well, and the service can secure every packet of data sent and received on your Android device.

Managing to complete all these tasks doesn’t mean much if you’d have to reduce your quality of life and make compromises elsewhere, such as in the performance department. Luckily, this isn’t the case with TotalAV.

Their Android app is super lightweight and doesn’t have a noticeable impact on your device’s performance. Combined with the ease of use of their application, TotalAV makes sure not to compromise on any fronts.


  •  Strong protection
  •  Lightweight Android app
  •  Phishing and ransomware protection
  •  Free version + affordable paid plans
  • Renowned for being one of the best antiviruses


  •  No monthly payment options


TotalAV offers 3 tiers of plans for their antivirus service:

TotalAV pricing

Antivirus Pro includes most of the features, including phishing and ransomware protection. Internet Security adds TotalAV’s VPN into the mix, on top of the features in the first tier, and Total Security adds their adblock on top of that.

We recommend the Internet Security package, which gives you both a tremendous all-around antivirus solution and VPN coverage which blocks known hacker IPs and malware distributors and protects your internet traffic against snooping third parties.

2. McAfee — A Premium Antivirus Solution for Android

McAfee is the runner-up of this list. McAfee is our premium choice for a provider, offering many interesting and premium features, although these premium features also manifest as a premium price tag.

McAfee best Android antivirus

Cheapest Plan Best Features Free Trial/Money-Back Guarantee Max Devices Supported Automatic Updates Auto-Clean
$29.99 1. Real-time scans

2. Dark web monitoring

3. Comprehensive Protection Score

30-days 10 Yes Yes

McAfee is an antivirus provider with lots of history behind it, which directly translates to their antivirus protection’s effectiveness. It’s incredibly secure and provides adequate protection for any device, including Android, of course.

When we tested McAfee on our Android device, we were surprised to find it positively identified every malware we attempted to load onto the system. Combine this with lightning quick scan times, and you’ll find McAfee is a surefire winner when it comes to Android antivirus.

McAfee also provides excellent web protection, which includes their firewall and identity protection, which lets you monitor whether your personal information has been leaked to the dark web, and even their own VPN, which is included even in their entry-level plan.

They also offer many features that would help businessmen, such as credit monitoring, credit lock, ransomware, and identity theft coverage up to a certain amount.

McAfee is no slouch in the performance department, either. Their many years of expertise also shine through in this category, resulting in a lightweight app that runs buttery smooth. The UI is clean and easy to navigate while still feeling responsive.



  •  Premium features are mostly available in higher-tier plans


Besides the basic plan for $29.99/year, McAfee offers 3 additional plans for their security services:


McAfee pricing

Plus is their entry-level plan, and even though it is entry-level, it offers access to even their VPN, making it relatively premium. Premium is essentially the same, with the only difference being the number of devices per subscription, which goes from 5 to unlimited.

Premium and Advanced offer premium features geared towards businessmen and business owners, such as credit monitoring and identity theft coverage. The Advanced plan may seem pretty pricy at first.

Still, it offers you up to $25,000 compensation for costs incurred by Ransomware slipping through McAfee’s antivirus system, as well as up to a million dollars in legal aid for the aftermath of a Ransomware attack. Enterprise users should definitely consider this one.

3. Norton — Android Antivirus Protection Ideal For Budget Users

Norton is next up on our list. Another antivirus provider with lots of experience in the field, Norton, offers a great antivirus at a reasonable price tag.

Norton antivirus Android

Cheapest Plan Best Features Free Trial/Money-Back Guarantee Max Device Supported Automatic Updates Auto-Clean
$19.99 1. Real-time monitoring

2. Parental control capabilities

3. Spam and adware blocking

60-days Unlimited Yes Yes

Norton, like McAfee, is a relatively old company. And as with McAfee, their antivirus protection is more than adequate for any user. Combined with their malware, ransomware, and hacking protection, they offer some of the best protection on the market.

In fact, Norton is so confident in the effectiveness of their product they offer your money back if their antivirus fails to remove a virus. They offer 24/7 support, so if you can’t remove the virus through Norton, you’ll be in touch with a trained technician ready to assist you.

Norton doesn’t fall short of its competitors in the internet security department, either. With access to tools such as their own VPN and dark web monitoring, Norton is more than adequate in this field as well.

Identity theft monitoring is highly important because no antivirus program can truly boast 100% detection. Monitoring leaks and taking action against them is vital, and Norton does this with credit checking and dark web monitoring.

Norton’s performance is also stellar. While not as fast as TotalAV and McAfee, it still makes a very strong showing in this department, keeping the gap as small as possible. Like McAfee, we found that Norton’s real-time protection feature detected 100% of our malware samples.


  •  Great budget
  •  Superb protection
  •  Good performance
  •  Access to VPN and other niche options at the higher tiers


  •  Entry-level plan limited to one device
  •  VPN not included in the starter plan


Norton offers 4 different tiers of plans. Starting at as low as $19.99 per year, Norton offers some of the best budget prices in this list:

Norton pricing

We recommend the Antivirus Plus package, as it’s rather cheap for top-tier antivirus protection. If you’re really worried about identity theft, the LifeLock subscription comes with the ability to freeze your linked bank accounts, credit cards, and bills if you think there’s a potential fraudulent transaction being processed under your name.

4. Avast — Powerful Anti-Theft Features For Android

Avast is another titan of an antivirus provider with lots of experience under its belt. With interesting tracking options in their arsenal on top of their antivirus protection, Avast is very likely to pique your interest.

Avast best free antivirus Android

Cheapest Plan Best Features Free Trial/Money-Back Guarantee Max Device Supported Automatic Updates Auto-Clean
$69.48 1. Free Edition available

2. Robust ransomware protection

3. Quick yet powerful scans

30-Days 10 Yes Yes

As you’d expect from an antivirus provider with so much experience, Avast’s protection is very strong. With swift updates to threat definitions, and strong web security provided by their Web Shield 2.0, Avast doesn’t disappoint here.

Their plethora of anti-theft and data security options set Avast apart from the other providers. Avast offers an encrypted vault for photos only you can access in case your phone gets stolen.

That’s only the tip of the iceberg, as Avast allows you to take remote pictures and capture audio in case your phone ever gets stolen, allowing you to identify the perpetrator.

Avast also allows you to see the last known location of your device in case you ever lose it in some way, effectively allowing you to track it under any circumstance. All of these amazing features do come with caveats, however.


  •  Great protection
  •  A vast suite of anti-theft options
  •  Encrypted photo vault
  • Among the top Windows antiviruses


  •  The performance leaves something to be desired


Avast has two different pricing plans, but if you want to protect your Android devices, you’ll have to buy the slightly more expensive package at $3.33 a month.

Avast pricing

That gets you access to Avast for 10 different devices across Android, iOS, Mac OSX, and Windows. It’s a superb choice if you’ve got a house full of diverse devices that all need protection, and it comes at an incredibly low price.

5. Nord Threat Protection — The Best Combined Antivirus and VPN Provider for Android

Nord Threat Protection is an interesting name to see on this list. Originally one of the biggest VPN providers in the entire world, NordVPN now also offers antivirus services.

Nord Android dashboard

Cheapest Plan Best Features Free Trial/Money-Back Guarantee Max Devices Supported Automatic Updates Auto-Clean
$2.99/month (2-year plan) 1. Comes with NordVPN

2. Adblocker

3. Real-time protection

30-Days 6 Yes Yes

Nord Threat Protection offers superb antivirus protection based on the same technology that powers their top-tier VPN. Nord continues to innovate regarding privacy protection services by filtering out all malicious or unwanted content before it ever appears on your device.

The lite version requires your device to be connected to the NordVPN service, but their premium antivirus package offers real-time threat protection even when you’re not online.

Originally a VPN provider, Nord Threat Protection has outstanding internet security features, including a tracker and ad blocker, and their top-of-the-line namesake VPN service. They also offer some premium features in the form of encrypted cloud storage and a data breach scanner.

Regarding performance, Nord Threat Protection is a force to be reckoned with once again. Their expertise from developing many VPN apps for different platforms shines through in their lightweight app.


  •  Good protection
  •  Great VPN
  •  Lightweight app


  •  The prices are relatively high
  •  VPN isn’t included in their entry-level plan


Nord Threat Protection offers 3 tiers of plans:

NordVPN pricing

Nord’s VPN service is worth buying for its stellar internet security, but adding an antivirus program on top of it seals the deal. The Plus package adds a NordPass, Nord’s complete password management tool, and dark web monitoring into the mix.

On top of all that, the Complete package also offers 1TB of cloud storage using Nord’s encrypted servers.

6. SurfsharkAV — Identity Theft Protection For Android and More

SurfsharkAV is the next provider on our list. Like Nord Threat Protection, SurfsharkAV is the antivirus service of SurfsharkVPN, a top VPN provider.

Surfshark Android antivirus

Cheapest Plan Best Features Free Trial/Money-Back Guarantee Max Devices Supported Automatic Updates Auto-Clean
$3.48/month 1. Real-Time scanning

2. Comes with a first-class VPN

3. Dark web scanner & safe search engine

30-Days (7 on mobile) 5 Yes Yes

SurfsharkAV’s security is, of course, more than adequate. With their real-time malware protection and threat definitions that get updated relatively often, it shouldn’t leave any doubts in the protection department.

We tried Surfshark out on our Android device and found that it blocked 96% of the malware we threw at it. We would’ve been happier to see a 100% score like some of the higher providers on our list but don’t let Surfshark’s lower score put you off.

Where SurfsharkAV really shines through is the myriad of internet security features it offers.

Including their own namesake VPN, a content blocker that blocks ads, trackers, and phishing sites, and a data breach monitor that notifies you if your data ever gets leaked in a data breach, SurfsharkAV is superb in this category.

Surfshark effectively blocks hackers, malware distributors, and advertisements before they even get a chance to appear on your computer, thanks to a DNS-level blacklist.

Performance-wise, Surfshark is pretty decent. The app is relatively lightweight, only a hair behind the top competitors. Their UI makes the app easy to configure and use. All in all, a good showing.


  •  It comes with its namesake, VPN
  •  Excellent performance
  •  Many internet and identity security features


  •  Expensive
  •  Need to commit to a long subscription to get reasonable prices


SurfsharkAV offers only one tier of plans. Their plan is called Surfshark One. The pricing differs based on the subscription duration.

Surfshark One pricing

A one-month subscription to Surfshark One comes to about $14.44 per month, totaling about $173.28 per year. This includes access to the Surfshark VPN, which you can install on unlimited devices. However, you’re limited to protecting 5 devices using Surfshark One’s real-time threat detection.

Best Antivirus Software for Android Compared

Here’s a quick head-to-head comparison of the best Android antiviruses to help you find the one most suited for you:

Provider Name Cheapest Plan Best Features Free Trial/Money-Back Guarantee Max Devices Supported Automatic Updates Auto-Clean
TotalAV $29 1. Robust Android app

2. Abundance of peripherals

3. Protects your critical applications

30-Days 6 Yes Yes
McAfee $29.99 1. Real-time scans

2. Dark web monitoring

3. Comprehensive Protection Score

30-days 10 Yes Yes
Norton $19.99 1. Real-time monitoring

2. Parental control capabilities

3. Spam and adware blocking

60-days Unlimited Yes Yes
Avast $69.48 1. Free Edition available

2. Robust ransomware protection

3. Quick yet powerful scans

30-Days 10 Yes Yes
Nord Threat Protection $2.99/month (2-year plan) 1. Comes with NordVPN

2. Adblocker

3. Real-time protection

30-Days 6 Yes Yes
Surfshark $3.48/month 1. Real-Time scanning

2. Comes with a first-class VPN

3. Dark web scanner & safe search engine

30-Days (7 on mobile) 5 Yes Yes

Does My Android Device Need Antivirus Software?

The short answer to this question is that you need antivirus software for your Android device. The long answer is a bit more complicated. Android is a relatively open and customizable platform.

It allows developers to develop hooks of the platform and for users to customize their devices extensively, allowing the usage of alternative app stores and installation methods. However, these come at the cost of opening the platform up to a myriad of security threats.

These threats range from ransomware that encrypts all your sensitive data to phishing scams that imitate legitimate apps to steal your personal and/or payment information, all the way to trojans that force your device into sending premium-rate text messages repeatedly, incurring a massive bill, and many more.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. As we all know, cybersecurity is an arms race between threats and antivirus software. New threats emerge every day, ensuring that no matter how informed you are, there’s always a chance of getting caught by some form of malware.

In fact, recent research shows that Android viruses account for 47.15% of all infected devices — a clear indication that an Android antivirus is an absolute must-have in today’s world.

The Best Free Antivirus for Android | Is Free Virus Protection Enough?

There aren’t many free options in the antivirus market compared to other software types, such as VPNs. The best free antivirus option is TotalAV’s free version.

However, most, if not all, free antivirus software comes with drastically limited features compared to their paid counterparts. So even though free options technically exist, we heavily recommend investing in a paid option instead.

No Antivirus solution will provide comprehensive identity theft management for free, one of the most important aspects of a modern security platform. Additionally, many paid antivirus plans also come with full 24/7 support.

So, if something goes wrong, you’ll be instantly contacted by a trained technician who can walk you through removing malware and repairing your PC.

How to Choose the Best Android Antivirus Software

While we did our research, we judged various antivirus services based on certain criteria:

  • Security — This criteria was based on how well the antivirus dealt with a myriad of threats and how well their internet security features worked. We tested each Android antivirus program to see if they could detect the various malware files we downloaded onto the phone.
  • Performance — Performance means how many resources the application needs to do its job. Protection is important, but we shouldn’t compromise our quality of life if we can help it.
  • Budget — To us, budget is about not only the price of the product but also the value. We don’t want to overpay for anything, no matter how good the service may claim to be. Where possible, we’ve evaluated the value of these premium subscriptions.
  • Additional features — The additional features criteria is every feature that doesn’t fit the above criteria. These include things like anti-theft, parental control, and VPN features.

For every provider on our list, they detected at least 95% of the malware we used. We believe that any antivirus that doesn’t meet this minimum criterion isn’t worth recommending.

In terms of performance, users are way more likely to uninstall an antivirus program if it gets in the way of their day-to-day life, even if it’s a significant downgrade in security. Ease of use and security can live side-by-side, as evident from the selection of providers in our list.

We also use AV-Comparatives as a trusted source to find the best antiviruses on the market. Here, they test the top solutions and offer statistics on their effectiveness. That said, you’ll find all of our top 6 here, with high ratings.

Scan for Viruses Android | How to Check Your Phone for Viruses

Here’s a step-by-step guide for installing TotalAV, the best Android antivirus, to protect your device and ensure your online safety starting today.

Step 1: Download the App from the Play Store

Downloading TotalAV is a quick and easy process. All you have to do is head over to the Google Play Store on the Android device you want to protect, then search for “TotalAV.” We’ve included the splash screen below, so imitators don’t fool you.

Installing TotalAV the best Android antivirus tool

Once you’ve downloaded the .apk, all you have to do is tap “Install” to start TotalAV up.

Step 2: Create Your Account

Now you’re inside the app, select the “Get Started” option. We’re assuming you haven’t created an account yet, so choose the pricing plan that suits you best and go through the checkout process. Once you’re done, you’ll be back on the app within seconds.

Step 3: Run Your First Scan

Finally, it’s time to start using TotalAV. You should enable real-time protection immediately, so you’re protected from the first moment you’ve got TotalAV set up. This keeps you protected against any new threats downloaded on the phone.

You should now run a Smart Scan on your device. While it’s probably not infected with malware, having a clean bill of health for your device is reassuring. It’ll check the most likely places on your phone where malware could lurk, but you can run a full scan as well, just to be sure.

TotalAV | Best antivirus for Android

With that, you’re all done. You can now browse the internet safely knowing that TotalAV has your back against a myriad of threats.

Android Antivirus FAQs

What is the best antivirus for Android?

What is the best free antivirus for Android?

What’s the best free antivirus for Android tablets?

Do Android phones need antivirus protection?

Will an antivirus slow my Android device?

Conclusion | What’s the Best Antivirus for Android in 2023?

Our conclusion for the best antivirus on the Android platform is TotalAV. We believe TotalAV is the most well-rounded antivirus provider based on our criteria. Offering a great mix of protection and security, web and internet security features, and value, TotalAV is our top pick.

We can wholeheartedly recommend their antivirus software for any Android device without a shred of doubt. After testing it out, we found that the core scan features were quick, didn’t slow the phone down, and picked up on every piece of malware we threw at it.

Try it now risk-free for a full month.

Sam Dawson

Sam is a cybersecurity researcher working in the field of hardware security and AI-driven penetration testing. He has spent the last few years contemplating some of the ways in which computers have been built wrong, and how we can possibly detect those flaws. When not stressing out over arcane details of computer hardware, Sam can be found advocating for data privacy in his spare time.