15 Nov, 2019
Looking for the best antivirus for iPhone? Well… you don’t need it.
If you are searching for the best antivirus for your iPhone, it’s probably because you have been conditioned to believe: Antivirus apps can protect your device. However, this notion is far from reality.
Malicious software such as viruses and trojans can’t damage your iPhone as it does to your PC and Mac. Here’s another kicker: No antivirus applications work on iPhones or any iOS devices. In this article, we’ll help you to understand why your iPhone doesn’t require antivirus apps and how Apple has provided a secure OS to keep iPhones protected.
The very first line of the iOS Security Guide says — “Apple designed the iOS platform with security at its core.” But it’s not just another good-to-hear line. Apple has delivered a highly secure platform by implementing ‘Sandboxing’ in its architecture.
You know that a sandbox is a container filled with sand for children to play, right? Most of the people built it for their kids in the backyard as an area where the kids can play without getting infected by the external environment — or causing trouble to others.
The idea behind the iOS sandbox is quite similar. It refers to isolating an application where it can run but with some restrictions, without access to the entire operating system.
So whenever you install an app on iOS, the platform creates a partition for that particular app limiting the access to the device, OS and other applications.
This means any installed app does not have access to the rest of your device and applications. So any type of malicious software can’t access the data on your device or affect other apps. The only way it would do is if you manually give permission to access your phone’s data.
In fact, sandboxing is the reason why any antivirus application won’t work on iOS — they can’t scan other apps on your phone. Traditionally, as in PC and Mac, antivirus software has deep access to the system to detect any malware. But in iOS, each app works in its own sandbox, the antivirus app can’t access other parts of the os including scanning the list of apps installed on the iPhone.
Here’s the catch: Did you observe the names of the popular antivirus apps. None of them has the term “antivirus”. Instead, they are termed as “Security” or “Mobile Security” apps.
Now it makes sense, right?
That’s the reason Apple remove a number of antivirus applications from the app store in 2015. The architecture that creates a partition between the apps and iOS would not let any app access the system — whether it be an antivirus scanning the apps or malware trying to steal your information.
Apart from sandboxing, there are a number of security features that are built-in the iPhone ranging from restricting app installation from unknown resources to secure browsing. Here, take a look.
Apple only allows you to install apps from its official app store and installing apps from an unknown source is prohibited. This ensures the apps you install on your iPhone are free from any malicious code and vulnerabilities. Any app you download from the app store goes through a meticulous security check. And in case a malicious code is found later, Apple can immediately remove it from the store and even get it deleted from your phone as well.
Phishing websites are fake websites masquerading as the real ones designed to trick you to submit your sensitive information. Safari browser “Fraudulent website warning” helps you to detect and avoid these websites enabling safe and secure browsing.
To turn on this feature to Settings > Safari and enable the “Fraudulent website warning” option under Privacy & Security.
Find my iPhone is a built-in tool to find missing or stolen Apple devices. It allows you to locate the device on the map, play a sound to draw attention, enable lost mode and even remotely wipe the entire data.
To enable it, go to Settings > Apple ID (Your Name) > iCloud > Find My iPhone and turn it on. Here, you can check the detailed article on How to Turn on Find My iPhone and locate your lost device.
Installing an antivirus or mobile security application won’t really make much difference. Your iPhone already has a set of built-in features that most fo the popular security apps provide.
Some mobile security apps provide additional features like VPN and email account breach alerts. However, there are even better options for such features like ‘;–have i been pwned?, a free website to check if your email has been breached and a number iPhone VPN apps for safe browsing (check our blog on best VPN for iPhone).
You can always download one for your peace but with all those built-in features and secure OS, you don’t need it. Moreover, never jailbreak your iPhone as it will run apps outside Sandbox, void your iPhone’s support and can cause some serious security issues.
Since you are here, check Digital Private Vault, a gallery vault app that helps you store and hide your confidential data on your smartphone.