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

Aviva Zacks
Posted: December 12, 2018

If you’re using an unprotected Android device, you’re already at high risk of virus infection and breaches of security. Having an effective Android antivirus is vital for protecting your personal information, and luckily you can install one completely for free.

Here are the top 5 really free Android antivirus programs we found:

  1. Total AV Free Antivirus
  2. BullGuard Free Antivirus
  3. Panda Free Antivirus
  4. Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition
  5. ZoneAlarm Free Antivirus

1. Total AV Free Antivirus

Total AV Free Antivirus

With its exceptional list of features, it’s clear why Total AV is one of the most commonly recommended antivirus programs on the market.

If you want an antivirus solution that covers as many aspects of smartphone security and maintenance as possible, Total AV Free Antivirus is a great choice for most Android users.

Main Features:

  • Quick scan
  • TotalAV Safe Site browser extension, available for Chrome and Edge
  • System boost

Benefits of Paid Version:

  • Quarantine option
  • Real-time protection
  • Ransomware protection
  • Smartphone optimizer, password vault, remote firewall
  • Technical support around the clock
  • 30-day money back guarantee

What We Liked:

  • Finds and removes duplicate files
  • Fast scanning
  • No impact on performance
  • Detected 90% percent of verified phishing samples

What We Didn’t Like:

  • No quarantine option in the free version
  • Produced a few false positives
  • Most advanced features require a paid upgrade

The Ideal Use Case:

Total AV Free Antivirus has the highest number of free features compared to other mobile antivirus software that we’ve tried so far, making it the perfect all-in-one solution for robust mobile protection.

Get Total AV Free Antivirus Now >>>

2. BullGuard Free Antivirus

BullGuard Free Antivirus

BullGuard has an excellent reputation as a solid choice for desktop protection as well as Android. With BullGuard Free Antivirus you can expect comprehensive malware detection with an emphasis on anti-theft protection.

Main Features:

  • Automatic scanning
  • Anti-theft features to lock, locate and wipe the device remotely
  • Backup and restore your personal data

Benefits of Paid Version:

  • Parental control tools
  • Location and GPS tracking
  • Protection for up to five devices

What We Liked:

  • Easy to lock, locate and wipe the device remotely
  • No false positives
  • No major impact on performance or battery life
  • Easy-to-use interface
  • Can be used on smartphone or tablet

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Includes pop-up advertising
  • No password manager

The Ideal Use Case:

BullGuard Free Antivirus is a solid option if you have sensitive data on your device and you want simple, yet high-quality anti-theft, data protection, and antivirus scanning for your Android device. Unless you’re looking for family protection across multiple devices, the free version will do just fine.

Get BullGuard Free Antivirus Now >>>

3. Panda Free Antivirus

Panda Free Antivirus

Panda is an easy-to-use antivirus that still contains the many security features offered by more complicated solutions – including a Process Monitor not offered with other free versions.

You won’t find everything here, but the streamlined interface, robust virus detection, and the option to upgrade to a VPN all make Panda a great pick for Android users.

Main Features:

  • Performance optimization
  • Process Monitor diagnostics tool
  • Hotspot Shield-based VPN
  • Full, critical and custom scanning
  • USB protection
  • Anti-theft features to track, lock and control a device remotely

Benefits of Paid Version:

  • Full technical support
  • Premium unlimited VPN (Virtual Private Network)
  • Parental control tools
  • Password manager
  • Extra anti-ransomware protection

What We Liked:

  • Excellent malware detection
  • SD card scan
  • Real-time scanning
  • Lightweight installation and no impact on battery and performance
  • Customizable interface
  • Ability to track, lock and control a device from anywhere

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Not enough browser-level safety settings
  • Hotspot Shield-based VPN is limited to just 150MB of data transfer a day with the free version
  • You have to create an account to use it whereas other free antivirus programs like Avast and Avira don’t require this

The Ideal Use Case:

Panda most likely appeals to Android users who want ease of use. While it doesn’t include all the features that some other antivirus programs for mobile do, its quick scanning and robust ransomware protection make it a good choice.

Get Panda Free Antivirus Now >>>

4. Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition

Lots of antivirus apps advertise themselves as being the all-encompassing, single solution for phone security. They usually have tons of features, some of which not everyone will use.

If you’re looking for a basic, easy-to-use antivirus tool without the bells and whistles, then Bitdefender Free is a great choice.

Main Features:

  • Full scan
  • Antivirus protection
  • Scans new apps as soon as they’re installed
  • URL blocking

Benefits of Paid Version:

  • Includes Bitdefender Mobile Security and Antivirus
  • Password manager
  • Web browser protection
  • Anti-theft features like locking and wiping a stolen phone
  • 200 MB free VPN data per day
  • 24/7 online support

What We Liked:

  • User-friendly
  • Light on your phone’s resources
  • No configuration necessary since the initial installation and startup are almost instant
  • Can use Bitdefender free tools, such as a browser extension, anti-ransomware and home scanner

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Doesn’t include more advanced features
  • No ability to schedule scans and no quick scan option
  • Requires an account

The Ideal Use Case:

Sometimes, less is more. Bitdefender is the ideal app for Android users desiring less clutter and nothing more than good antivirus protection.

Get Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition Now >>> 

5. ZoneAlarm Free Antivirus

ZoneAlarm Free Antivirus

ZoneAlarm is a great free antivirus for online protection, particularly if you surf the web a lot.  It also includes a few unique features to secure your mobile device, such as a powerful firewall.

Main Features:

  • Robust anti-theft features
  • Safe Wi-Fi connection from anywhere
  • Protects your device from a hostile takeover
  • Blocks ransomware attacks
  • Web security and privacy toolbar

Benefits of Paid Version:

  • File scanning
  • Two-way firewall
  • Notifications and alerts about malware
  • Network and operating system scans
  • Continuous background scanning

What I Liked:

  • Small download size and fewer app permissions required
  • Ability to use public W-Fi hotspots safely
  • Proven 100% detection rate
  • App alerts about suspicious activity, such as when an app uses your microphone without your consent
  • Locks camera, microphone, photos and messages

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Some false positives
  • No quick scan
  • Adverts

The Ideal Use Case:

The drawback to some free software is that it’s usually riddled with advertisements. ZoneAlarm is a straightforward and easy-to-use app that still offers a hefty feature set for protecting your mobile device and includes robust malware detection.

Get ZoneAlarm Free Antivirus Now >>>

The Final Word

As you carry your phone around with you everywhere and you use it for all sorts of sensitive activities, such as online shopping and banking, it’s becoming more and more at risk of being hacked as Android viruses grow.

Luckily, a free antivirus for Android takes care of any threats, plus the lack of charge removes the responsibility of commitment. However, as with most things in life, you always get what you pay for and certain free antivirus programs may be better suited than others.

If you haven’t found the right one for you in the list above, or you’re looking for software that comes with more advanced features, you may want to consider one of our top 10 paid antivirus programs that include free packages for mobile. But if you’re just doing for a quick solution, the above options will do just fine.

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.