This guide will not only teach you how to remove virus from your Android device but also teach you how to prevent your phone from getting virus in the future.
Although you have owned an Android device for a long time, you have to admit that you still don’t know how to make the most of it and care for it. Especially when it comes to IT security issues, you are definitely short of information and, in fact, you fear that you have “caught” a malware that leads you to have errors, slowdowns and unwanted advertisements on your device.
If your Smartphone has been tormented by viruses and malware, this post will help you know how to remove viruses from your mobile phone and restore the correct functioning of your device?
Most times you don’t need to format or flash your phone in order to remove viruses from it.
All you have to do is take a few minutes of free time to read the instructions contained in this guide. I am sure that, in one way or another, you will be able to remove viruses and keep or restore your mobile device in excellent condition. I wish you a good read and I wish you a big good luck for everything!
How to Remove Viruses from Android Phone
Do you have an Android smartphone? Is it running very slow, sluggish, hanging and displaying unknown apps and adverts? Chances are it’s infected by virus/malware. In that case, here are some “tips” that will surely help you to remove viruses from your phone for free and, even better, prevent future problems of this type.
Activate System Security Measures
Android devices, if the right precautions are taken, do not need to have an antivirus app installed for real-time protection, as there are settings that automatically block the installation of applications from unknown sources (apps not from the Play Store) that could cause damage to the device (as some are badly modified by inserting malware inside them).
The first step in checking if you are protected against unintentional installation of apps from unknown sources is to check your Android settings following these steps.
- Go to Settings by tapping on the icon with the gear symbol at the right corner side of your Smartphone
- Scroll down and select Security.
- Then go to Other settings
- Click Install apps from external sources and check if, in the list of apps that is proposed to you, there are some with the word Allowed under the name. If so, select the name of the app in question and disable the toggle for the item Allow app installation, to disable the ability to install apps from unknown sources.
Depending on the version of Android you are using, the items to be pressed may vary slightly. In some cases, for example, you may need to go to Settings> Apps & Notifications> Advanced> Special App Access> Install Unknown Apps.
You should therefore check that in the list of apps proposed there is no word Allowed: if so, tap on the app in question and move the lever from left to right, in order to disable the item Allow from this source.
In general, I therefore recommend that you install apps from reliable sources only, i.e. from the Play Store, to avoid downloading and installing apps that can harm your smartphone or yourself (collection of personal information, as well as passwords you type).
Disadvantages of this Method
The main disadvantage of this method is that you will not be able to install some useful apps which are not listed on Google Play Store. For example, football live streaming app Moko TV is a clean app but not available on play store.
If you have a device without the Play Store, such as Huawei smartphones with AppGallery, I recommend that you only go to stores with proven reliability, such as the just mentioned Huawei AppGallery or Amazon Appstore.
Also, always keep your device up to date with security patches that are released periodically. Usually, when an update is available, you are shown a notification telling you to download and install it.
How to Check for an Update
If you want to check for an update, go to the Settings menu > About (about phone)> System update , to Settings> System> System update or, again, to Settings> System and updates> Software update. The menus may change depending on the version of Android you are using.
One last piece of advice I want to give you is to avoid rooting your Android device. This practice, while being useful for unlocking some advanced functions, exposes the device to security risks.
You’ve been hearing about apps on the Play Store lately that aren’t safe, so are you afraid of downloading apps even from the default Android store? Don’t worry, Google has intervened on this delicate problem by making the free Play Protect service available on all Android devices equipped with Google applications. What’s it about? It is a system that regularly scans all the apps in the Play Store and those installed on your device to check their safety.
The service should be active by default on your device, but if you want to check its status, continue reading in the following paragraphs.
Open the Google Play Store (the colored ▶ ︎ symbol) and tap the ☰ button at the top left. Scroll to the menu items until you find the Play Protect and tap on it. Then press on the gear icon located at the top right and, if necessary, move the lever relating to the item Analyze apps with Play Protect to ON .
In this way, your device will be protected, both from the apps downloaded through the Play Store, and those you eventually want to install from unknown sources (but I strongly advise against doing so). If you want, you can also perform an on-demand scan of the device by pressing the appropriate button on the main screen of Play Protect.
How do you say? Do you have a device without the Play Store or, in any case, would you like to adopt an additional protection measure for your device? No problem: there are numerous antivirus for Android that can be installed for free and monitor the system status in real time. Read my tutorial dedicated to the latter to find out which are the best currently available.
Use Safe Mode
Android provides a safe mode that allows you to start the device by deactivating all third-party apps and services, so that any problems on the device deriving from third-party software (e.g. apps with malware from unknown sources) can be identified and solved.
Accessing Android Safe Mode is simple, but I warn you that there is no standard procedure for all smartphone models. I will therefore suggest below the two most common procedures among Android devices. If they do not work on your smartphone, I recommend that you check its instruction booklet or do a search on the Internet.
The first method to activate Safe Mode is to press and hold the physical shutdown / lock screen button on your Android device, so that the shutdown and restart options appear. Then press and hold the Shut down option , until the Restart in Safe Mode box appears . Then tap the Ok button and wait for the phone to restart. You will notice that the device will have entered Safe Mode by the appropriate wording on the screen.
If the above method does not work, then you are likely entering Safe Mode while restarting your device. Turn your device off and on again (or simply use the Restart feature ) and as soon as your device manufacturer’s logo appears, press and hold the Volume Down key (or the Home key ). Press and hold it until you get to your device’s home screen, which will have Safe Mode in the corner of the screen.
Once in safe mode, I recommend that you first reach the list of apps installed on your device to check that there are none that you think you have never installed. Be careful though, some apps or services you don’t know can be important elements for your device and absolutely must not be deleted. If you don’t have root permissions, the situation is simpler, because you can’t remove apps or system services, but caution is never too much. In fact, you could remove or disable some essential service for the functioning of some app.
To reach the list of apps, access the Settings , using the icon with the gear symbol , and select the items App> Download or App> App . Then tap on the name of an app that you think is suspicious and, if your doubts are well founded, press the Uninstall button to uninstall it.
If you can’t remove an app, it probably has permission to administer your device, which will need to be removed before you can uninstall it.
Then go to the Settings menu > Security> Other settings (item not always available)> Device administrators and, having identified the malicious app, tap the box next to it to remove the check.
To get out of safe mode, simply restart your Android device. If, despite having put into practice what is indicated in the previous paragraphs, you have not been able to uninstall the malicious app, I suggest you to read my other guide on how to remove malware from your phone.
Reset the Phone
If you have not been able to get your smartphone back on track through the steps I illustrated above, you can try a more drastic operation: perform a factory reset of the device.
Factory reset is a practice that allows you to restore your device to the state it was in when you bought it. It will then erase any applications installed on the device and all personal information and settings on the device, including photos and videos. It is therefore important, before proceeding, to make an Android backup .
To perform factory reset;
- Go to device Settings
- Click Backup and reset
- Click Factory data reset
Alternatively for other versions of Android, go to Settings > System and updates > Reset > Reset phone .
Format the Device
If you have done everything above and still the virus or malware continue to disturb your Android device, then, the last option is to format the phone. It must be removed once the phone is formatted or flashed.