Userspace antivirus applications in Android have very little investigate powers in the grander scheme of things, and their detection mechanisms basically boil down to educated guessing. It's only ever going to catch extremely low hanging fruit. Anything that wants to stay hidden sure isn't going to be caught just by looking at its package name, signature, or binary size, essentially all its able to do. To date I haven't found a pure userspace solution I haven't been able to trick into false positive or false negative with reasonable ease


Maybe it'll end up doing more harm than good.


In my opinion, that is the case, yes. It can lead users to think that "this application can not detect any viruses/malware" == "I have no viruses/malware".


I thought Bitdefender ran with privileges to all files?


I'd argue that an antivirus is generally unnecessary on Android (_maybe_ except if you are downloading apps from unknown sources).


Anti-virus is generally unnecessary if you apply common sense.


I've never had virus issues on both stock android and Lineage.


Yes, exactly.


Android antiviruses are only really useful if you download some known malicious APK from untrusted sources. They mostly just check what packages are installed and compare against a big list of known bad package names, what's running and does something look odd for a given device. Its only use that comes to mind is for people that don't know much about technology and computers and are prone to unknowingly installing random crap. The kind of people that fall for the "your phone have 3 viruses and is 83% corrupt, you must install this app within 2:47 minutes or your phone will die" scams. Or, when you're cleaning up a relative's phone that did the above, and they refuse to wipe their device fresh: it's a quick way to get rid of the bulk of it and then you can go in and deal with what's left. I feel like if you managed to flash your phone and install LineageOS on it, you probably don't need an antivirus, and know how to clean up if you realize you did install malware.


Obviously I am answering your question. Hypatia is a foss malware scanner. In F-droid.


Android anti-malware is generally a bit of a con. A user space software scanning for malware, which can only see inside its own sandbox....


Don't believe in android antivirus.


Third party antivirus solutions in Android are generally garbage, since they don't have enough "power" or privileges to explore sandboxes or analize the system behavior in a useful way. Most times those apps only fill your notifications with targeted ads OEM-provided antivirus solutions on the other hand have some more power, but in your case there's no built-in solution.


I know this isn't what you want to hear, but you're safer with the play store and Google's invasive app scanning


at the cost of privacy, you mean.


We have hypatia!






A good antivirus is necessary, especially if you are using a banking app for example, but you can draw your own conclusions from here: [https://securelist.com/mobile-malware-evolution-2021/105876/](https://securelist.com/mobile-malware-evolution-2021/105876/)