5 Best (REALLY FREE) Antivirus Programs for iOS in 2019

Aviva Zacks
Posted: December 12, 2018

In 2019, the idea that there are no hackers looking to breach Apple devices is simply outdated. Unfortunately many iPhone and iPad users are simply too lax about protecting their devices, making them easy targets for hackers.

iOS devices can be hit with viruses, malware, spyware, phishing scams, and other malicious system breaches that compromise your sensitive data. The quickest solution is installing a free antivirus program until you decide on a more robust solution.

But do free antivirus solutions really exist for iOS devices?

We found five truly free AVs to protect your Apple device.

Top 5 Free Antivirus Programs for iOS

  1. Total AV free antivirus
  2. Panda Security free antivirus
  3. BitDefender Mobile Security free
  4. ZoneAlarm Mobile Security free
  5. MobiShield free

1. Total AV Free Antivirus

Total AV Free Antivirus

Total AV is a great choice if you’re looking for solid iOS smartphone security. While the mobile version does not focus on anti-malware as much, the tool is still feature-rich and effective. Plus, it’s free to download, although you do need to create an account to use it.

The Features You’ll Get

  • Quick scan
  • Safe Site browser extension for Chrome and Edge
  • System boost tools

What You Get if You Decide to Pay

  • Option to quarantine threats
  • Real-time protection
  • Ransomware protection
  • Smartphone optimizer
  • Password vault
  • Remote firewall
  • 30-day money back guarantee

What I Liked

  • Finds and removes any duplicated files
  • Scans are fast
  • No impact on performance

What I Didn’t Like

  • The app can be slow and unresponsive at times
  • No quarantine option for the free version
  • You have to pay for advanced features
  • Some false positives

The Ideal Use Case

Total AV is great for iOS protection as it offers the most free features of any other free mobile antivirus we’ve used. Plus, its ease of use makes it excellent for beginners.

Try Total AV free version >>>

2. Panda Security Free Antivirus

Panda Security Free Antivirus

Panda Security is one of the most positively rated antivirus programs in the App Store. But while the free mobile antivirus for iOS has a handy location tracker, if you’re looking for more advanced features, you may want to consider paying to upgrade.

Luckily, all paid versions of Panda offer you a free 30-day trial – great if you want to try before you buy.

The Features You’ll Get

  • Limited VPN
  • Real-time scanner
  • Location tracker
  • Process Monitor
  • Anti-theft features to track and lock a device remotely

What You Get if You Decide to Pay

  • Password manager
  • Cleanup tool
  • Premium unlimited VPN
  • Advanced ransomware protection
  • Parental control tools
  • 30-day money back guarantee

What I Liked

  • SD card scan
  • Low impact on performance
  • Attractive user interface
  • Ability to control your phone remotely

What I Didn’t Like

  • Majority of the useful features are locked behind a paywall
  • VPN limited to 150 MB bandwidth per day
  • Some false positives

The Ideal Use Case

Panda Security has limited features and is a barebones free antivirus for iOS. If you’re looking to more advanced features or a VPN with bandwidth you can actually use, you may want to pay for one of the premium services.

Try Panda Security free version >>>

3. BitDefender Mobile Security Free

BitDefender Mobile Security Free

BitDefender Mobile Security provides a feature-rich experience for iOS users that is completely free to use. It does contain ads, but you can pay to remove them if you wish.

The Features You’ll Get

  • VPN
  • iPad support
  • Anonymous web surfing
  • Anti-theft features
  • Email breach protection

What You Get if You Decide to Pay

  • Password manager
  • Safe files
  • Parental control tools
  • File encryption
  • Device optimizer
  • Secure online shopping

What I Liked

  • Easy to install
  • Low impact on performance
  • No constant pop-ups and notifications
  • Remote locking and blocking in case of theft
  • Remote scans and optimization

What I Didn’t Like

  • App uses your location even when it’s not running
  • Decreases battery life

The Ideal Use Case

BitDefender Mobile Security is great at a lot of things. With so many features, it’s a great catch-all option for mobile users looking for comprehensive protection.

Try BitDefender Mobile Security free >>>

4. ZoneAlarm Mobile Security Free

ZoneAlarm Mobile Security Free

ZoneAlarm Mobile Security is an “all in one” solution for your iOS antivirus needs with several unique features for protecting your iOS device, including identity theft protection.

The application is free to use for seven days, but after that you have to upgrade to Premium for a monthly fee.

The Features You’ll Get

  • Robust anti-theft features
  • Safe Wi-Fi browsing
  • Protection from hostile takeovers
  • Blocks ransomware attacks

What You Get if You Decide to Pay Premium

  • Notifications and alerts about malware it finds
  • Scans the network and operating system
  • Continuous background scanning
  • 7-day money back guarantee

What I Liked

  • Small download size
  • Few app permissions required
  • Safe Wi-Fi connections anywhere in the world
  • App alerts
  • Ability to lock certain aspects of the phone, such as camera and messages

What I Didn’t Like

  • Some false positives
  • Advertisements

The Ideal Use Case

If you’re worried about identity theft on your iOS devices, ZoneAlarm is the antivirus built for you, assuming you’re willing to shell out the extra money for Premium Plus. Otherwise, regular Premium is more than enough to keep you up-to-date on recent data breaches and virus reports for iOS.

Try ZoneAlarm Mobile Security free >>>

5. MobiShield


MobiShield contains quite a few extra features that no other antivirus app includes, especially in the system resource monitoring department. While other apps can do that for you, MobiShield gives you the chance to bundle it into your antivirus. It is now completely free.

The Features You’ll Get

  • Backup and contact restore
  • Battery charge and memory usage monitoring
  • Mobile data usage tracking
  • File encryption
  • Wi-Fi scanning to weed out risky networks

What I Liked

  • The many system resource monitors are convenient to have in one app
  • File encryption is something I rarely see in iOS antivirus software

What I Didn’t Like

  • Somewhat cluttered user interface
  • Gives a lot of technical information that can be hard for the average user to understand

The Ideal Use Case

MobiShield is the right choice if you’re an avid iPhone user with some technical knowledge of smartphones. As mentioned, if you’re interested in monitoring your iPhone’s memory, data usage, and battery charge, MobiShield works well. Its file encryption is another selling point rarely found elsewhere.

Try MobiShield free >>>

The Bottom Line

While there are several free antivirus apps that work well for your ios device, if you’re looking for more complex tools like identity theft protection then it may be worth upgrading to a paid or premium version.

However, if you’re just looking for the bare bones or you’re not quite ready to commit to a paid version and wish to try before you buy, then one of the above five free antivirus programs is the way to go.

For more info on these and other antivirus solutions, visit our reviews page.

About the Author

Aviva Zacks
Aviva Zacks

Aviva Zacks is a content manager, writer, editor, and really good baker. When she's not working, she enjoys reading on her porch swing with a cup of decaf.