How can I install a antivirus/malware removal app without Playstore?

TonyRedBeard1284

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Hi everyone!

I recently received an Ellipsis 8 (model: QTAQZ3) tablet from my brother, who purchased it new. It's old (2016), so is running Lollipop 5.1.1. I do not run a SIM card in it, but it is a Verizon tablet (not sure the actual manufacturer). My goal was just to try out a tablet to see if I really would use it enough to purchase something better; however, I've opened a can of worms with this!

In the process of reviving it, I've discovered that it has a deeply bedded trojan-type virus (best I can figure). The virus is blocking wifi access about 15-30 seconds after I turn wifi on - each time, every time. When I finally get logged into Playstore, the virus is blocking me from even searching for any antiviral or malware removal apps (ie: Malwarebytes and Kaspersky). Same situation in Chrome. It is a long process to search, as I only get a half minute window once the wifi connects each time I turn on wifi.

I've already done a factory reset, and a second reset after first clearing the cache - both did not get rid of the issue - which I again assume is a trojan of some sort. I've tried operating it in safemode, safemode and airplane mode, and normal mode, to which there was no difference in the issue. Since I cannot get a solid wifi connection, I've not been able to try anything else on it, but all system things and setting changes respond normally.

So my question, is there a way to download and install an antivirus app without Playstore using the USB? Or something else to fix this that I'm not asking correctly - I'm very new to the Android world at this level. I have built and worked on PC's for many years.

Any guidance you can provide will be greatly appreciated!

Thanks much!
 
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belodion

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Welcome.

First, are you saying that you are reasonably certain that this is not simply a wifi fault of some kind?
 

Mooncatt

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If you've done a factory reset and tried in safe mode, then this sounds more like a bug than a virus. If I'm not mistaken, that was a freebie tablet Verizon offered for a time and wasn't well received.
 

TonyRedBeard1284

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Hi @belodion - yes, I'm 100% sure it is not wifi fault. I've dealt with similar issues with PC trojans in the past where it hijacks wifi drivers and manipulates firewalls and browser search capabilities to stay infected. If it wasn't effecting the Playstore results, I wouldn't be so certain.
 

TonyRedBeard1284

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Hi @Mooncatt - Unfortunately, I'm not going to give up that quickly - I am very certain that this is a trojan type virus, not a programming bug, as it is manipulating Playstore search results and capabilities. It is acting like PC trojans I've dealt with in the past
 

Mooncatt

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All I can say is good luck. You admitted you aren't very experienced in this area of Android, yet seem certain that it's malware. Those two statements don't jive well together, and the symptoms you mentioned aren't necessarily indicative of an infection. Many people have problems connecting to Wi-Fi and the Play store across many devices, and it's never malware. Plus, this tablet is old and not a very popular one, so it's unlikely you'll find much support for it.
 

mustang7757

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Hi @Mooncatt - Unfortunately, I'm not going to give up that quickly - I am very certain that this is a trojan type virus, not a programming bug, as it is manipulating Playstore search results and capabilities. It is acting like PC trojans I've dealt with in the past
Welcome to AC!

That Andriod version and how old it is i wouldn't waste time with it , it doesn't get security support for awhile now and lots of apps will not be compatible with that Andriod version. If i was in your situation i get something more up to date.
 

L0n3N1nja

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You can install apps without wifi or the Playstore. You need to find the APK files for the particular app online from a trusted source, I don't download APKs off the web so I can't recommend a website. Once you've got the APK files you can put them on a flash drive or external hard rive and connect it to your tablet, I believe it requires a FAT32 format on the storage for Android to recognize it and a flash drive would be best as some external hard drives draw too much power from the USB to function.

You can use a file browser on the tablet to move the APK from the external storage to internal. However a downside to Android is not all devices had a file browser pre-installed, if yours doesn't this won't work.

With the file on the tablet you can run it to install the APK but it will also require you to dig into the tablet settings to enable installation from unknown sources, by default Google locks Android devices to only allow installation from the Play Store for security reasons.

Bit of a complicated process but it is possible. As others have stated, that tablet and Android version are old enough some apps won't work on it and it wouldn't be secure for use of anything with important data. I don't even think you can use Facebook on it anymore.

I worked at Verizon when those tablets launched, they were mediocre back than but capable of basic use at the time.
 

mustang7757

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You can install apps without wifi or the Playstore. You need to find the APK files for the particular app online from a trusted source, I don't download APKs off the web so I can't recommend a website. Once you've got the APK files you can put them on a flash drive or external hard rive and connect it to your tablet, I believe it requires a FAT32 format on the storage for Android to recognize it and a flash drive would be best as some external hard drives draw too much power from the USB to function.

You can use a file browser on the tablet to move the APK from the external storage to internal. However a downside to Android is not all devices had a file browser pre-installed, if yours doesn't this won't work.

With the file on the tablet you can run it to install the APK but it will also require you to dig into the tablet settings to enable installation from unknown sources, by default Google locks Android devices to only allow installation from the Play Store for security reasons.

Bit of a complicated process but it is possible. As others have stated, that tablet and Android version are old enough some apps won't work on it and it wouldn't be secure for use of anything with important data. I don't even think you can use Facebook on it anymore.

I worked at Verizon when those tablets launched, they were mediocre back than but capable of basic use at the time.
APK mirror always my go to .
 

Mooncatt

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Looking at the Malwarebytes info page, it looks like it's not going to be compatible with your tablet, and Google Play will not show results for apps if they are not compatible or region restricted.

Screenshots_2022-05-07-09-45-05.jpg

Kaspsrsky says it's supposed to be compatible with 5.0 and up, but that's old enough that it's still questionable. I also dug around for the Wi-Fi issue and didn't find much. Someone on the Verizon community forums suggested the problem may be due to a Verizon lockout where the tablet connects long enough to see if the tablet is associated with an active Verizon account and will automatically disconnect if it isn't on an active account. No one else verified if that is possible on a Wi-Fi connection, but I could see something like that happening if it was on a payment plan that wasn't kept current and has a balance due.

I still think it's not worth keeping it due to its age and you shouldn't use this experience to judge all tablets, but I guess it wouldn't hurt to contact Verizon to see if that tablet was blacklisted for some reason.
 

B. Diddy

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Hi @belodion - yes, I'm 100% sure it is not wifi fault. I've dealt with similar issues with PC trojans in the past where it hijacks wifi drivers and manipulates firewalls and browser search capabilities to stay infected. If it wasn't effecting the Playstore results, I wouldn't be so certain.

Just to be sure -- you've already tried connecting the tablet to other wi-fi networks, like at your public library or local coffeeshop?

Have you already tried rebooting your router? See this guide for other ideas: http://forums.androidcentral.com/am...roubleshooting-wi-fi-connection-problems.html
 

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