Considering that modern smart TVs (specifically the variant that allows you to install apps) run operating systems and can execute code downloaded online, there is a considerable risk of malware (virus) infestations.
Malware on such devices is often obtained from one of the following three sources:
- App store.
- Side-loaded apps.
- Web browsing (more specifically, visiting websites infected with malware).
- Removable media (USB drive containing that sketchy app you’ve been waiting for).
Unsecured Wi-Fi networks also pose a risk. Samsung allegedly Tweeted that users should scan their QLED TVs for viruses, as they should scan their computers. I couldn’t find the Tweet myself, but it would have been a very good PSA, as it is not only true — but important. If your TV runs Android or another popular OS, then the risk of a virus infection is considerable. Just as risky as a phone or tablet.
Antivirus software can be installed via app stores easily, and is generally a good idea! You should also take a look at my other privacy and security tips for Android devices.