Businesses use a firewall and regular security system upgrades to protect their Linux servers from cyber assaults and threats. However, there still remains the chance for unauthorized users to gain access to these protected systems. To avoid your Linux systems from getting into these risks, malware scanning tools can be of great help. 

The malware scanning tools are designed to detect viruses, malware, rootkits, and other malicious software and activity forms. These tools are used to do scheduled system scans and send you email notifications of any issues found.

While there are many malware scanners for Linux, here we’ll explore our top 5 picks for enhancing security on your Linux machine. Join us as we create the ultimate anti-malware defense by helping you understand which tools will protect you best against different threats!

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What are Malware Scanners and How Do They Work? 

Malware scanners are applications or tools that analyze any malicious software. These applications analyze all the malware variants like adware, viruses, Trojans, and worms. Also, these tools help protect your system from being exposed to any threats. 

The malware scanning process starts when a new file enters your system. Every malware has a unique signature or code used to identify it. The malware scanner collects this code and compares it to the other codes in the database. If this code matches any virus signature or code, the tool returns with a final decision of categorizing the file as malicious. Once the file is identified as a threat, it is deleted immediately to protect the system from exposure to any harm. 

Top 5 Linux Malware Scanning Tools 

Below are some best tools that can help you detect malware on your Linux system:


It is recommended to use Lynis, a free and open-source security tool for Linux, for auditing Unix-based operating systems like macOS, Linux, and BSD. Michael Boelen is the one who came up with the idea for this instrument. Lynis is available for download. 

Lynis is a security application that can carry out in-depth scans by inspecting your computer’s operating system, kernel settings, installed packages and services, configuration settings, encryption, and other types of malware scanning. It is put to extensive use for compliance and audit testing purposes.

Use Cases

  • Security auditing
  • Penetration testing
  • Compliance testing
  • System Hardening
  • Vulnerability detection


  • Provides a user-friendly interface for viewing audit records online.
  • It can be set up on a server with minimal effort and requires no specialized knowledge to function correctly.


  • The command structure is complex.


File servers that Linux powers are frequently indispensable to companies of all sizes, including small, medium, and big. File servers are particularly vulnerable inside a network because of their central location. 

Malware can spread across these servers like wildfire. Avast is an excellent antivirus program for Linux file servers because it checks for viruses meant to target Linux for infections built for other operating systems. 

This feature is what makes Avast so effective. The reason for this is as follows: a malicious program designed for Windows will not affect whatsoever on our Linux file server; nevertheless, if another Windows machine on our network downloads the malicious file, that computer will be in danger. 

Therefore, to stop the malware from spreading further, it is essential for the antivirus software on the file server to recognize dangers posed not just to Linux but also to Windows and Mac computers. According to our interpretation, this is what “complete virus prevention” entails.

Use Cases

  • Avast is a great security solution for any individual or business looking to protect their data, systems, and networks. 
  • It offers real-time protection against malware, ransomware, and other online threats and secures device access control. 
  • It also provides comprehensive network scanning and monitoring that can detect suspicious activity on your network in time.


  • Linux distributions are tailored to the needs of data storage systems.
  • Looks for threats against Linux, Windows, and Mac systems.
  • Administration of IT functions concentrated in one place.
  • Automated, periodic pushes of the latest changes.


  • Compared to competing commercial Linux antivirus software, this one is pricier.
  • Only the highest-tier plans have firewall protection.
  • Inability to recognize behavior-based issues.
  • Does not provide continuous security.


Another cybersecurity and anti-malware software company that has been around since the 1980s is McAfee. It provides various services for customers who use it for their enterprises and personal use and add-on services for eliminating viruses. 

Suppose you search for a comprehensive protection solution for a digital home environment. In that case, the McAfee Secure Home Platform contains everything you need, from personal computers to smart televisions, game consoles, and even smart thermostats.

Use Cases

  • Their antivirus software will help protect your Linux from malicious programs and keep it running smoothly.
  • They also offer web security solutions like content filtering and malware detection that can be used to protect your business from malicious websites and hackers.


  • Stellar support
  • Light on system resources
  • One license covers up to 10 devices


  • Cloud backup is limited 
  • renewals are costly 
  • Need to pay separately for many features 


When preventing cybercrime and spreading malware, Kaspersky should require no introduction. It provides a solution for nearly every problem, such as Kaspersky Total Security, which enables the identification of a broad range of malicious software and also includes a virtual private network (VPN) integrated right in. 

However, Kaspersky’s newest product, which is an entirely online malware scanner and remover known as Kaspersky Security Cloud, is the one that steals the show.

Use cases

  • Kaspersky is designed to help protect users from cyber threats, from malware and viruses to phishing and ransomware.
  • Businesses can take advantage of the powerful features of Kaspersky, such as encryption technology, network security, data leakage prevention, and more.


  • Capable of securing IT infrastructures with more than a thousand nodes.
  • Incorporates a visual interface to facilitate use.
  • Administrative technology’s nerve center.
  • Defend against ransomware with Anti-top-notch Cryptor’s security.


  • It’s not suitable for companies with fewer than 10 desktop PCs.
  • Depending on the Linux distribution, additional software may be required.
  • Fewer hours for tech support.
  • The price and plan levels are unclear.


Linux’s flexibility makes it a popular choice for companies that manage their servers. Bitdefender is an excellent antivirus program if your IT solution operates on Linux. It’s one of the cheapest options, for starters. Yearly membership for up to three computers is available for as little as $76.69. When compared to personal antivirus subscriptions, that’s very reasonable pricing. 

It may also be expanded to accommodate more users. It doesn’t matter if you need to secure three or one hundred machines; Bitdefender has a plan that won’t break the bank. Our whole workplace network of ten computers, including three Linux servers, was covered for only $259.

Use Cases

  • Advanced threat protection technology allows it to recognize and block suspicious files, while its advanced firewall capabilities help to keep intruders away.
  • Bitdefender now offers secure VPN access and automated vulnerability scanning to ensure your system is up-to-date with the latest security patches.


  • Licensing for three or more devices at a reasonable price.
  • Linux file server anti-malware protection.
  • Compatible with mixed settings consisting of Linux servers and Windows or Mac desktops.


  • No firewall for Linux.
  • Only command lines are used for control.
  • Fails to identify all possible ransomware assaults.

Bottom Line

All the tools mentioned are viable for use and offer great features. It is important to remember that when securing a system, multiple layers of security should be used to make it more difficult for an attacker to penetrate the system. Using a combination of these tools, you can create a strong defense against malware threats on your Linux systems.

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