Do you know why you should have Digital Security Apps in your Mobile?
As the smartphone landscape continues to grow (over 90% of Americans are now smartphone owners), malicious threat actors are taking notice. For years, mobile security has been largely ignored in favor of desktop security solutions. After all, no one targets phones, right? Smartphone operating systems are too compacted and advanced to allow threats in…. aren’t they?
93% of security professionals think that we should all be taking mobile security more seriously. In fact, you could have a virus on your phone right now, and you probably wouldn’t notice.
That tricky little keylogger may be hidden behind a popular app, and it’s just waiting for you to input your credit card information so that it can transmit that data to its unrightful owner.
Luckily, increasing your mobile security awareness and reducing those smartphone viruses hiding behind apps may be possible if you pick the best mobile VPN. Let’s look at the 8 best Digital Security Apps that will help you improve your device’s security.
Top Digital Security Apps:
1. Avast Mobile Security
If you’re looking for a feature-rich antivirus scanner for your smartphone, Avast should be your go-to solution. To be clear, Avast also scans for malware, keyloggers, and all of the other types of malicious security threats that could potentially be considered outside of the “virus” namesake.
The scanning feature of the app takes about 30 seconds to do a full phone sweep. And it’s updated with the latest-and-unfortunately-greatest threats.
In a German independent lab test, Avast Mobile Security detected 100% of the 3,347 malware threats — meaning that it’s consistently updated and threat-ready.
The app also comes with anti-theft features that allow you to remotely wipe your device when it’s stolen (though some sources claim that the anti-theft functionality is subpar-to-unfunctional)
Overall, Avast is the best bang for your buck. And that’s probably because it doesn’t cost a buck.
- Fantastic active threat protection
- Has anti-theft features
- Doesn’t offer browsing protection (i.e., encryption, etc.)
2. Kaspersky Internet Security
Like Avast, Kaspersky is a free mobile antivirus scanner with anti-theft mechanisms. And, also like Avast, Kaspersky scored high in a German independent lab test (99% instead of 100% like Avast.) There are two things that Kaspersky has that Avast is lacking.
- It’s free AND ad-free
- It has anti-theft features that… well… work
But Kasperksy isn’t perfect. It lacks WiFi security. And (like Avast) it doesn’t have any data encryption capabilities. But, like Avast, Kaspersky has a free version. And that free version doesn’t have extremely annoying popup ads, which is always a plus.
Kaspersky isn’t the biggest name on the block. But it easily outpaces other mobile defending solutions like McAfee. And it can run extremely fast scans across your entire device without breaking a sweat.
Overall, it’s an incredibly thorough and well thought out solution that can help protect your device from a plethora of issues.
- Amazing anti-theft feature
- Great antivirus capabilities
- Free and ad-free
- Doesn’t offer data encryption
- No WiFi security
3. LastPass Authenticator
When it comes to smartphone threats, there’s nothing quite as terrifying as password theft. We use our smartphone A LOT, in America. 57 million of us regularly use it to log onto our bank accounts. If someone steals that bank password, you’re in trouble.
LastPass Authenticator adds 2-step verification to any of your online accounts. So, instead of simply asking for your password, it will also text you to confirm. And that’s an easy way to prevent digital theft in its tracks. After all, whoever logs in also has to have access to your physical device.
- Enables 2-factor authentication for passwords
- No antivirus capabilities
- Doesn’t encrypt data
While antivirus programs and two-factor authentication apps can certainly help your device stay secure from incoming threats, what about outgoing ones? Every time you access the internet, you’re sending personal data across the web. Your location, your device type, and even your personal information can be intercepted during this transfer (called a Man-in-the-Middle attack).
A VPN for iOS or a VPN for Android can help you encrypt your data before you send it. So, instead of sending all of that valuable information out into the wild, a VPN like Surfshark encrypts the data first – ensuring that no one can track or access your information.
This is especially crucial for those of you that utilize public WiFi from time-to-time. Surfshark has the best VPN mobile app on the market, but there are multiple brands releasing VPNs in a mobile-ready form.
- Protects your data in transit
- Encrypts data
- Allow you to bypass region blocks
- Doesn’t protect against viruses like an antivirus
- Doesn’t protect your passwords as well as 2-factor authentication
5. 360 Security
Do you want full-scale protection? 360 Security may be the answer to your problems. Not only does 360 Security have a built-in antivirus scanner, but it has SMS filtering, call filtering, smartphone clean-up capabilities, WiFi protection, and even notification alerts. This is the jack-of-all-trades of the phone security world.
But, while it has all of the above, it also has some serious flaws. For starters, it doesn’t do all of these things, as well as some other apps.
But, again, you only have to deal with one app — which may be a relief for those who already deal with a plethora of apps littering their screens (the average person downloads 25 apps per month.)
Also, 360 Security doesn’t have the encryption features of a VPN (so you’ll still want 2 apps minimum.) There are also some really annoying ads in the free version, and the paid version is expensive.
- Does it all (almost)
- Easy to use
- Annoying ads
- No encryption
- Doesn’t have as good of antiviruses like Avast or Kaspersky
6. Norton Mobile Security
Let’s start with this — Norton may have the best antivirus. Not only does it have an incredibly thorough and well-designed scanning program, but it also pre-vets apps you download from the Google Play Store — making it the only app in its category with this type of feature.
Norton has malware protection, anti-theft, WiFi security, privacy, and more. So, you’re probably wondering, “what’s the catch?” After all, we put it down on the list. Why is that?
Well… it’s the price. Norton is expensive at $30. And, really, that’s no expensive in the sense that it’s going to break the bank. But it’s expensive compared to the other apps on this list. And, to be completely honest, it’s almost as good as Avast — which is $30 less.
- Amazing product with tons of great features
7. McAfee Mobile Security
We’ve arrived at the middle-of-the-road apps. McAfee is good at some things and great at nothing. It has free features (which is always nice.) But, it’s malware protection is subpar compared to Avast and Norton, and most of its features are lackluster at best.
And McAfee also offers a VPN option. But, it’s $99 per year and offers nowhere near the functionality (e.g., unlimited streaming, thousands of servers, military-grade encryption, etc.) that stand-alone VPN solutions like Surfshark offer.
In reality, the only reason to choose McAfee is if you’re really committed to the brand name. Otherwise, look elsewhere.
- Decent malware protection
- Free features
- Subpar compared to other offerings
- Expensive VPN
8. Malware Bytes Security
Let’s talk about the two main types of malware protection — active and inactive. Active protection helps analyze and prevent real-time threats on your device.
This includes real-time scans, monitoring solutions, and all of the other “stop-it-in-its-tracks” features that help curb incoming threats. Inactive protection finds all of the nasty malware that’s already on your device.
Malware Bytes Security is great at the latter. It does a spectacular job of finding existing malware and destroying it. Malware Bytes Security is not good at the former.
It doesn’t have the sophisticated features (like Avast) to prevent real-time incoming threats.
But, you don’t always need real-time prevention. For example, if you’re phone has been acting strangely, and you want to figure out if it has malware right now, Malware Bytes Security is the perfect solution.
It’s fast, free, and easy. So, if you need to know why your phone keeps opening up random tabs or texting random people, this app is for you.
But, if you’re looking for consistent active protection, look elsewhere.
- Amazing inactive security scanning
- Some level of WiFi protection
- No real active malware protection
- No encryption capabilities
We’re all on our phones more than ever. And during these browsing sessions, we put ourselves at risk. All it takes is the wrong app download or wrong website visit to compromise the security of our devices.
Luckily, there are plenty of apps aimed at preventing your browsing sessions from becoming issue-prone nightmares.
While the above Digital Security Apps are the best-of-the-best, there are thousands of other solutions on the market that may fit your particular needs better, and everyone should put in independent research to ensure that they’re using the best apps for them.
So, what do you think about all these Best 8 Digital Security Apps? Let us know which app you liked the most!