Smartphones are increasingly becoming a major driver of our daily lives (already are for some people).
As a result, most of us have sensitive information, such as but not limited to bank details, phone numbers, account passwords, etc.
If you own a personal computer you’re most likely aware of what a virus or malware is and have taken the necessary preventive measures against them.
With that in mind, you might be wondering whether your phone can get a virus. Phones can also access malicious websites as well as store a wide variety of files.
Does it mean these devices are as susceptible to viruses as PCs? We are about to find out.
How Common Are Phone Viruses?
Generally, virus infection cases are a rare occurrence in both Android phones and iPhones.
So, the chances of your iPhone or Android device getting a virus are pretty slim.
Nevertheless, you’re better safer than sorry—it’d be wise to take the necessary precautions to protect your phone from virus attacks.
Since we’ve confirmed your phone could get a virus, here’s a simple explanation of how it may happen.
Potential virus attacks on smartphones originate from downloading malicious applications and content.
To be safe, always source your app downloads from trusted sites. Android users should always use the Google Play Store or get apps from their respective manufacturer stores.
For iOS, all apps should be downloaded from the App Store.
The recommended stores always have security measures in place to keep out malware.
As for third-party download sites, you can never be too sure—avoid them.
If you have to use these sites, make sure you do your due diligence to minimize the risk of downloading malware-infected apps or files.
Is your Android device rooted? Did you jailbreak your iPhone? If your answer is yes to any of these questions, the chances of getting a virus on your phone are a bit higher.
Phones, especially iPhones become more susceptible to viruses once you jailbreak them.
There are many viruses out there created to target jailbroken iOS devices. Keep that in mind if you intend to jailbreak your phone.
Keeping your phone’s software up to date is essential in protecting you from viruses.
Always download security patches whenever available. Device manufacturers work around the clock to ensure new threats don’t affect users.
Ideally, you should get a notification whenever a new update or security patch is available.
Viruses on Android Phones
Unlike computers, Android devices have a locked bootloader to ensure any potential threats stay out.
Web attacks are not possible as long as the bootloader remains locked. For this reason, the chances of getting a virus are pretty slim. Malware specifically targeting Android phones is also rare.
However, taking the previously mentioned download precautionary measures is a good idea to further reduce the risk of infection.
Viruses on iPhones
Like on Android phones, the chances of getting a virus on an iPhone are also quite narrow.
Furthermore, iPhones tend to be more secure than their Android counterparts—iPhone apps are limited when it comes to communicating with each other within a device.
In case one app gets infected with a virus, spreading across the device won’t be possible. Jailbreaking your device is the only way you can increase the risk of getting a virus on your iPhone.
Secure Your Phone
Keeping your smartphone secure at all times is a no-brainer.
Fortunately, you won’t have to worry much about getting viruses on your phone as long you don’t jailbreak or root it.
But you should always keep your guard up by downloading content from trusted publishers at all times.
Also, remember to update your system software whenever the device manufacturer pushes out an update.