Remove malware or unsafe software

Malware is unsafe or unwanted software that may steal personal info or harm your device.

You may have malware on your device if:

  • Google signed you out of your Google Account to help protect you from malware on your device.
  • You notice suspicious signs on your device, like pop-up ads that won’t go away.

Find more signs of malware

Device symptoms

  • Alerts about a virus or an infected device
  • Anti-virus software you use no longer works or runs
  • A significant decrease in your device’s operating speed
  • A significant, unexpected decrease in storage space on your device
  • Your device stops working properly or working altogether

Browser symptoms

  • Alerts about a virus or an infected device
  • Pop-up ads and new tabs that won't go away
  • Unwanted Chrome extensions or toolbars keep coming back
  • Your browsing seems out of your control, and redirects to unfamiliar pages or ads
  • Your Chrome homepage or search engine keeps changing without your permission

Other symptoms

Your contacts have received emails or social media messages from you, but you didn’t send the emails or messages.

Step 1: Make sure Google Play Protect is turned on

  1. Open the Google Play Store app Google Play.
  2. At the top right, tap the profile icon.
  3. Tap Play Protect and then Settings.
  4. Turn Scan apps with Play Protect on or off.

Tip: If you’ve downloaded apps from sources outside of the Google Play Store, turn on Improve harmful app detection.

Step 2: Check for Android device & security updates

Get the latest Android updates available for you

When you get a notification, open it and tap the update action.

If you cleared your notification or your device has been offline:

  1. Open your device's Settings app.
  2. Tap System and then Software update.
  3. You'll find your update status. Follow any steps on the screen.

Tip: If you have a Pixel device, it may say "Software updates."

Tip: If you installed a modified (rooted) version of Android on your device, you lose some of the security protection provided by Google. To restart the security features provided by Google, reinstall the original Android operating system on your device.

Get security updates & Google Play system updates

Most system updates and security patches happen automatically. To check if an update is available:

  1. Open your device’s Settings app.
  2. Tap Security & privacy and then System & Updates.
    • For security updates, tap Security Update.
    • For Google Play system updates, tap Google Play system update.
  3. Follow any steps on the screen.

Tip: If you don't find an available update, you can try to restart your phone.

Step 3: Remove untrusted apps

Uninstall any apps that are unnecessary, untrusted, or from sources outside the Google Play Store.

  1. On your Android phone or tablet, open the Settings app Settings.
  2. Tap Apps & notifications and then See all apps.
  3. Tap the apps you want to uninstall and then Uninstall.
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions.

Step 4: Do a Security Checkup

  1. On your Android phone or tablet, open a web browser, like Chrome.
  2. Go to
  3. To fix any security issues in your account, follow the steps.

Tip: You can learn more about how to review your account settings and secure your account.

If you still notice signs of malware

If you continue to notice signs of unsafe software, you may choose to take one of the following steps:

Protect Your Identity Online

Get step-by-step visual guides on the tools and practices that will help you protect your personal information with Google's Online Security Guidebook.

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