Free Android anti-virus products virtually useless

As mobile technologies grow more and more advanced, so too does the need to protect and secure them. With phones acting as access to potential access points to sensitive emails, SMS messages and other content, it is inadvisable to leave them unsecured and according to results from AV-Test.org's analysts, you may as well go without one of the free AV options on the Android Market too.

If you cannot see the table clearly enough, the applications tested are:

  • Antivirus Free
  • BluePoint Antivirus Free
  • GuardX Antivirus
  • Kinetoo Malware Scan
  • LabMSF Antivirus beta
  • Privateer Lite
  • Zoner AntiVirus Free

The best result from a manual scan was that of Zoner... with an utterly abysmal 32% detection rate. The only other competitor to get more than 0% was Kinetoo's Malware Scan, which picked up 6% of the 172 intentional infections. According to the download counter on the Android Market, the most popular application offering anti-virus 'protection' is Creative Apps' Antivirus Free. It scored 0% on both tests performed by AV-Test.

AV-Test gave the following statement along with their tests.

The circulation of obviously near to useless security apps endangers those, who trust them and install apps from 3rd party app markets without further suspiciousness.

If you run an anti-virus application on your Android phone you may want to uninstall it, since it seems to just take up storage space and give no real benefits in return. While it might pick up on something, who knows what it isn't picking up on? 

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