Your TV could have a virus - here's how to check

Have you been scanning your smart TV for viruses? (Photo: Shutterstock)Have you been scanning your smart TV for viruses? (Photo: Shutterstock)
Have you been scanning your smart TV for viruses? (Photo: Shutterstock)

Smart TVs are becoming more and more common in households, with Ofcom reporting last year that almost half of the homes within the UK owns one. But are you maintaining yours correctly?

In a now deleted tweet, Samsung advised its customers that they should run scans on their Samsung smart TV to check for viruses and malware.

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What did Samsung say?

The American customer support Twitter account for Samsung tweeted, “Scanning your computer for malware viruses is important to keep it running smoothly.

“This is also true for your QLED TV if it’s connected to Wi-Fi””

The tweet went on to advise that customers should be protecting their smart TV by scanning for viruses every few weeks.

The message prompted some concerns about customer security, but in a statement given to the BBC, Samsung said that the tweet had been posted for “customers' education".

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How do I protect my TV?

Which? states, “The simplest way to avoid getting a virus on any device is to not connect it to the internet at all. But in most cases this will greatly impact how you use it.”

Smart TVs use the internet to allow you access streaming apps such as the BBC iPlayer and Netflix, but you’ll still be able to watch Freeview broadcasts on a TV if you disconnect it from the internet.

However, What HiFi says that if you have a smart TV that’s connected to the internet “the risk of malicious software attacks on TVs remains very low”.

How do I scan for viruses?

This is how to conduct the Samsung recommended virus scan:

After clicking on the menu button on your Samsung QLED smart TV remote, select ‘general’After opening the ‘general’ section, scroll down until you find ‘system manager’Open ‘system manager’ and scroll down to ‘smart security’After opening ‘smart security’ you’ll then see the opportunity to ‘scan’

This will start the scan of the TV’s hardware, which will detect whether there are any viruses present. You will then be notified if any are found.