Avast Mobile Security: Getting Started

How to Use Avast Mobile Security

Avast Mobile Security is a security app for Android designed to secure your device against unwanted phishing, malware, spyware, and malicious viruses such as trojans. The app also provides a range of features to make the use of your device easier.

To use Mobile Security, refer to the instructions in the following sections:

Navigate the Mobile Security interface

Tap the Avast Mobile Security icon on the main screen of your device to open the app.

The Mobile Security interface comprises five tabs at the top of the screen.

Each tab consists of different information or actions that you can perform. The tabs include:

  • Smart Scan: scans all installed applications and memory card contents, and informs you of security risks caused by changes to default Android settings.
  • Storage: displays the current percentage of used storage space on your device and enables you to free space via the Avast Cleanup app.
  • Wi-Fi Check: verifies the security and speed of a Wi-Fi network that you are connected to.
  • Tools: provides access to a range of privacy protection and device management tools, enables you to log into your Avast Account, and gives you access to the app settings.
  • More by Avast: enables you to open or install other apps by Avast to improve the performance and security of your device.

To change tabs, tap a tab icon or swipe left or right depending on which tab you want to access.

Scan your device for security threats and configure your protection settings

The Smart Scan tab enables you to scan your installed apps and memory card contents for security issues. The scan also detects security risks caused by changes to default Android settings.

You can run this scan manually from the Smart Scan tab or schedule regular scans from the Tools tab.

Follow these steps:

  1. Tap (or swipe to) the Smart Scan tab, then tap Scan this device. When the scan is complete, Smart Scan reports any issues that it finds or advises that your device is safe.
  2. Tap Resolve to deal with any security issues found on your device.
    If no issues are found, Smart Scan provides you with tips for further optimizing your device.
  3. Tap (or swipe to) the Tools tab, tap Settings, then tap Protection to open a list of protection settings.
  4. Tap Scheduled scan to set regular scans.
  5. Turn on the Scheduled scan button, and select the time and day(s) of the week when you want the regular scan to run.
  6. Tap the back arrow to confirm the settings of your scheduled scan and return to your protection settings.
  7. Turn the following shields on or off :
    • App Install Shield: prevents you from downloading malicious apps onto your device.
    • File Shield: prevents you from opening malicious files on your device.
    • Web Shield: prevents you from accessing fake sites online.
    To ensure maximum protection, all shields are enabled by default.
  8. Turn the following protection options on or off :
    • Internal storage scanning: enables the app to scan the internal storage of your device, including your photos, media files, and installed apps, for threats. This option is disabled by default.
    • Low reputation apps: enables the app to detect and warn you about apps with low reputations. The reputations of apps are determined according to feedback from Avast users.
    • PUP detection: enables the app to protect you from Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs) which are programs that are stealthily downloaded when you download other programs. PUPs usually clutter your device with unwanted activity, such as toolbars and ads that interrupt you while browsing online.
  9. Tap the back arrow to exit your protection settings.

Verify the security and speed of a connected Wi-Fi network

The Wi-Fi Check tab enables you to verify the security and speed of a Wi-Fi network that you are currently connected to.

Follow these steps:

  1. Tap (or swipe to) the Wi-Fi Check tab, then tap Scan Wi-Fi. The scan results appear.
  2. Tap Resolve and follow the suggested steps if an issue is found.
  3. Tap Wi-Fi Speed Check to test the speed of your Wi-Fi network. The app advises you of the Download and Upload speed of the connected Wi-Fi network.

Manage your storage space

The Storage tab displays the current percentage of used storage space on your device and enables you to reduce the amount of occupied storage space via the Avast Cleanup app.

Follow these steps:

  1. Tap (or swipe to) the Storage tab.
  2. Tap Open Cleanup to be redirected to Avast Cleanup.

In the Cleanup app, you can remove unnecessary files, media, apps, and app data to provide you with more storage space on your device. You can also transfer files and media to a cloud storage service. For more information about Cleanup, refer to the following article:

PIN protect your important apps

The App Locking feature enables you to set a PIN for your apps. Each time you want to open a protected app, you are required to provide the PIN. To enable this feature, it is necessary to grant the Usage Access Permission in the Security Settings of the device (on Android 5 and higher). To use App Locking, follow these steps:

  1. Tap (or swipe to) the Tools tab.
  2. Tap App Locking .
    If you have not already granted the Usage Access Permission to Mobile Security, you are prompted to tap Go to Settings, then redirected to the Security Settings of your device. Turn the permission on to continue.
  3. Tap Create PIN, then select your account, and confirm the selection by tapping OK.
  4. Type your new new PIN, then retype the PIN to confirm it.
  5. Turn on App Locking, and on the next screen, turn on the App Locking option for the apps that you want to protect.

To change your PIN at any time, go to Tools, then Settings, then Change PIN.

Block unwanted calls

With Call Blocker, you can filter voice calls based on blacklisted phone numbers that can include all unknown numbers, hidden numbers, manually added numbers, and numbers from your contact list. When a call is blocked, the caller is automatically redirected to voice mail. To block calls, follow these steps:

  1. Tap (or swipe to) the Tools tab, and tap Call Blocker .
  2. Tap the add icon, and on the next screen, select the type of number(s) that you want to blacklist (for example, tap All unknown numbers, or tap Enter number to specify a phone number manually).

Calls that are blocked by Call Blocker are visible under the History tab on the main screen of Call Blocker.

Check the permissions of your apps

In Privacy Advisor, you can view a list of the installed apps on your device. When you click an app from the list, details of the Ad Networks and App Permissions that the app requires open. To use this feature, follow these steps:

  1. Tap (or swipe to) the Tools tab, and tap Privacy Advisor .
  2. Select the app that you want to check. Privacy Advisor displays the App Permissions and Ad Networks that the selected app requires.

Privacy Advisor also enables you to uninstall a non-system app by tapping Uninstall, or open more information about an app by tapping App Info.

Manage internet access for installed apps with the Firewall (rooted devices only)

The Firewall feature enables you to manage internet access for installed apps. Follow these steps:

  1. Tap (or swipe to) the Tools tab, and tap Firewall .
  2. Turn on the Firewall button, and tap Grant to give the feature access to your device.
  3. Select the apps that you want to block, and select from the following options:
    • Block all: to completely block the app regardless of the connection type.
    • Block mobile data: to block the app only when the device is not connected to a Wi-Fi network.

On some devices, the Firewall may not work if the Android mobile data limit is enabled. To resolve this issue, tap the Settings icon, and turn on the Take highest priority option.

Avast Firewall only works on rooted devices. In case you are using ROM with a modified Linux core, ensure that iptables are supported. Alternatively, recompile the kernel with this feature supported. All the applied rules are logged when the user has enabled logging. The log is reset each time a rule change is applied.

Configure your Mobile Security settings

In the Settings section of the app, you can adjust the configuration of Mobile Security to meet your needs. Follow these steps:

  1. Tap (or swipe to) the Tools tab, and tap Settings .
  2. Tap an option to perform further actions:
    • Activity log: view a list of recent activities performed by the app, such as updates and scans.
    • Protection: schedule automatic scans and turn on additional protection settings.
    • Updates: check the current Virus definitions version. By default, virus definitions are updated whenever you have internet access. To preserve mobile data, turn on the Update over Wi-Fi only option so that updates only occur when you are connected to a Wi-Fi network.
    • Notifications: set the types of notifications that you want to receive from the app. All notifications are turned on by default. The Permanent notification is necessary for the app to provide you with complete protection.
    • Change PIN: set or change your App Locking PIN.
    • Community: set your preferences for sharing anonymized information that helps us understand your needs and improve our product accordingly.
    • Help & Support: find answers to the most commonly asked questions about the app, go to our forum, or contact support.
    • About: view information about the app such as the End User License Agreement.
  • Avast Mobile Security
  • Android 4.0.3 and higher

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