How to Remove a Virus from an Android Device

Frank  — October 19, 2018  ·  Read user reviews

Removing an android virus doesn’t have to be scary or hard. As you probably know, all computers are susceptible to viruses and other kinds of malware. Everyone who owns a computer needs to be aware of the inherent security risks of owning a computer and keeping personal information stored on it. The same is true for smartphones. 

Since the explosive proliferation of smartphones, hackers and thieves have been looking for ways to exploit their vulnerabilities.

Did you know that more than a million new viruses are released to the world every single day? That’s an insanely high number and something that should concern you, especially if you aren’t taking the appropriate precautions.

Can Android Phones Get Viruses?

You may not have been aware that viruses and malware were even a threat to Androids and other kinds of smartphones. But if you consider the issue at hand, you’ll realize that smartphones are just mini computers that you carry around in your pocket, bag or backpack. It’s natural that someone would find ways to exploit the vulnerabilities in mobile devices.

In short, yes. Android phones can get viruses. Fortunately enough, viruses on smartphones aren’t as prolific as computer viruses, but they still exist. As such, it’s especially important that you protect your Android smartphone just as much as you would protect your computer.

Prevention is the Best Medicine

Before we jump into explaining how you can remove a virus from your smartphone if you ever get one, let’s look at the ways you can prevent it from happening in the first place. As always, prevention is the best medicine when it comes to malware.

Preventing viruses from infecting your phone follows many of the same principles you employ when protecting your home computer. Using common sense when using your phone will get you a lot farther than anything else.

Consider these tips:

  • Don’t visit suspicious websites. The internet is full of suspicious and malicious websites. Some websites exist solely to take your information or infect your phone with viruses. As you browse the web, trust your phone’s web browser when it tells you a site is unsafe. These built-in protection tools can help you avoid a whole world of trouble.
  • Don’t give away your information to strangers. Unfortunately, there aren’t any Nigerian princes looking to give you free money. It should go without saying, but don’t give your personal information away to people you don’t know. This is the fastest way to open yourself to viruses, malware, and identity theft.
  • Don’t download apps from untrustworthy sources. When you want to download an app, do it through the appropriate channels. The Google Play store and other Android app marketplaces typically employ some kind of vetting process for any app that is made available for download. However, there are some malicious apps that still make it through. Read reviews and avoid suspicious looking apps.
  • Don’t plug your phone into a stranger’s computer. When an Android phone is plugged into a computer, it creates a bridge between the two devices across which data can pass. You may only connect phones to computers to download photos or charge your phone, but that doesn’t mean the computer can’t send something back. Avoid plugging your phone into public computers. In fact, it’s probably best you avoid plugging into anyone’s computer but your own.
  • Download an antivirus app. There are tons of antivirus apps on the Google Play store and other Android app stores. These apps often come from major antivirus software companies and can be trusted fully. With these apps installed on your phone, you can rest assured you are providing an extra layer of security for your devices. Here at we have found the best antivirus tools for your Android phone.  

The Top 5 Best Ways to Remove Android Viruses

Hopefully, you never have to deal with a virus on your Android device, but it’s the unfortunate reality for many people. If you get infected with a virus, not all hope is lost. You can still recover your phone and get rid of the virus. Let’s take a look at the top five ways to remove a virus from your Android smartphone:

  1. Run an Antivirus Scan: If you have an antivirus app installed on your phone, take the time to perform a full system scan through the app. Most antivirus software runs quietly in the background, but the virus may have infected an area of the system that isn’t regularly scanned. Running an antivirus scan can help identify, quarantine and eliminate the threat altogether. Once the scan is done, you’ll be able to see a summary of what the antivirus found. Need help? We’ve found the best Android Antivirus tools.
  2. Uninstall the Malicious App: Many viruses get onto your phone through malicious apps. If you notice your phone acting strangely or slowing down immensely after downloading a certain app, don’t hesitate in deleting the app in question. You should also do some online research to find out if other people have had issues with the same app. There are plenty of Android forums online where people like to talk about these things.
  3. Restart Your Phone: Have you turned it on and off again? This phrase is said often jokingly, but there’s an immense amount of truth behind it. Sometimes all your phone needs is a good restart. Restarting the phone can clear temporary files, which is where many viruses live. The best case scenario is that you don’t have a virus at all, but rather a temporary bug that’s cleared once you restart your phone.
  4. Restore Your Phone from an Earlier Backup: If you aren’t backing up your phone, you should be. Plug it into your computer and back it up to your physical hard drive. You can also back up your information to the cloud through certain apps and providers. If you get infected with a virus, you can restore your phone to a previous backup. Be aware that this doesn’t always work, since your backup file may also contain the virus.
  5. Factory Reset: If all else fails, you can always resort to a full factory reset for your Android device. This erases everything on your phone and gives you a fresh install of the operating system. You should only use this technique as a last resort, and if you do, make sure your important things like photos have already been saved somewhere else.

Remember, prevention is generally the best way to ensure your Android device stays virus and malware free.