With the introduction of monitoring tools, it has become relatively very easy to monitor someone's cell phone activities. But where these monitoring tools are meant for parental control or employee monitoring, it is also possible that someone used them against you. According to the tool used, the person will be able to view your email record, call logs, text messages, account login credentials, and much more. So, if you think, "is my phone being tracked?" or how to know if someone is tracking your phone, here we will tell you 5 signs on how to tell if your phone is tracked and its countermeasure to protect yourself.
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Table of Content
- Part 1: How do I know if someone is tracking my phone? 5 Signs to Tell!
- Part 2: How to Check for Spy Software on an iPhone?
- Part 3: How to remove spy apps from your phone?
A device that has monitoring or spy software installed on it will behave strangely than the ones with no such tampering. Below are some signs your phone is hacked or tracked with the help of spy software and your activities are being monitored -
Faster draining of battery
Spy software will consume battery and device resources while running in the background. So, this will result in more battery consumption and your device battery will drain faster.
Strange noise while calling
If you hear strange background noises while calling, then it is possible that some are listening in on your calls with a monitoring tool. It is one of the signs your phone is hacked.
Overheating of the device
An app that constantly updates data in the cloud will consume a large number of resources continuously, which would increase the overheating of the device.
Increased data usage
Since the spy app will need to send the device report to the one doing the monitoring, it will consume a large amount of data, which can be seen through your device's increased data usage. But note this, you can't say for sure with just one sign alone. If these signs appear together, you will want to know how to cope with the situation.
Abnormal permission requesting
Certain apps will ask for permissions that clearly they don't need-- why is a note app asking for camera usage permission? Why is a cooking app asking for voice-recording permission? When this happens, be mindful. If you're using a phone with a pop-up camera(yep, that's a thing), and your camera pop-up without your operation, that means some apps are secretly taking photos. What to do? Read on.
Apple doesn't approve of installing spying or monitoring tools. That's why, if someone wants to install spy software on your phone, they will need to first jailbreak your device. Jailbreaking the iPhone will install the Cydia app on the iPhone, which can give away the jailbreaking. So, if you find the Cydia app on your iPhone and you didn't jailbreak your device, then it means someone else did the deed without telling you and not with a good intention.
Jailbreaking means removing the security restrictions that were implemented on iOS by Apple. Jailbreaking iPhone may give better access to the core functions of iOS but it can also make your device vulnerable to many security risks.
- It becomes very easy to install a spy app after jailbreaking the iPhone.
- Malware or other malicious apps can easily get access to your iPhone core functions, decreasing its performance.
- It will expose your personal information and user accounts to possible hacking.
- There is also a risk of bricking your iPhone while trying to jailbreak it.
Rooting an Android device is the Android version of removing restrictions on the device OS and gain superuser access to its core functions. But like jailbreaking, Rooting Android also has many security risks associated with it -
- You would be able to receive Over-the-air or OTA updates.
- Giving root access to malicious apps will make your personal information vulnerable.
- A malware app can install some other malicious apps without your knowledge after rooting.
- Viruses and Trojan may attack your device.
If you have a question in mind like "Is my phone being tracked with a spy app?" then you can use the following solutions to remove spy apps from your phone -
1. Manually Delete from Apps manager
Since a spy app will delete its icon and work stealthily in the background, if you think your smartphone is being monitored, you can go to the Apps Manager in your device settings and manually delete the app from there. No matter how advanced a spy app may be and try to hide its presence, it will be visible in Apps Manager, though it may present itself as some other important system service.
2. Update your device OS
Another effective solution for removing a spy app is by updating your device's operating system. Spy apps are like other software that heavily relies on compatibility with OS to work. When you update your phone OS, the spy app may not work properly, effectively removing the threat. In the case of the iPhone, when you update the iOS with the help of iTunes, it will remove the jailbreaking from your device as well as any other app.
3. Perform a factory reset
If you can't find the spy app or there is no OS update released yet for your device, you can perform a factory reset of your device to remove the spy app. Factory reset will delete all data and apps on your smartphone, including the Spy app. But, since you will lose all data on your device, this method should be the last option and not the first one you try to remove the spyware.
How to keep your phone protected?
To make sure that you don't need to know the signs your phone is hacked with a spy app, it is important that you keep it protected at all times. Here is how you can protect your phone from spy apps -
1. Use a password on the lock screen:
Since all spy apps need physical access to be installed on the target device, if you keep your phone password protected, they won't be able to install the spy app on it. Aside from installing spy apps, it will also protect your phone from unauthorized access.
2. Don't root or jailbreak your phone:
Jailbreaking or rooting the phone may allow malware to install other apps on your phone without your permission, which can also include spy apps. So, either you take extreme care in installing apps after rooting or jailbreaking your phone, or don't do it to protect yourself from being monitored.
3. Install a security app:
You can minimize the risks of installing spyware or malware on your device by using a security or antivirus app. These will automatically detect and inform you about any malicious app installed on your phone.
4. Keep your device up to date:
Always keep your device firmware and OS up to date so as to fix any security vulnerabilities the old firmware might have.
Don't install an unverified app:
Stop installing every other app that you encounter, as there is a chance that you install a malware app or spyware mistakenly. Before installing any app, make sure that it's from a notable developer or not.
How to know if kids have installed an unverified app?
Unlike adults who may worry about the safety of these unverified apps, kids are curious about apps from unknown sources, so they may download some inappropriate apps while using their devices. So, how do you know if an unverified app is downloaded on your child's device? Here I recommend a powerful and reliable parental control app- FamiSafe:App Blocker.
By using the App Blocker & Usage feature of this app, you can easily check which apps your child has installed or uninstalled. Once they install an unverified app, you will get alerts. For any unworthy app, simply restrict them. With this feature, you can block any app that is not safe for your child!
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It can be very frightening to think "is someone tracking my phone?" because you know that if your doubt is genuine, then all your personal information on the phone will be exposed to potential danger. The tracker may get your user account credentials, contact list details, email, and all other data on your smartphone. This, in turn, can also expose your family to potential dangers. So, in this article, we have given you some tips on "how to tell if your Android is hacked?" After ensuring that whether your phone has been compromised or not, you can use the tips mentioned here to remove the spy app from your phone.
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