In this modern digital world, it is impossible to get privacy for you. Either in one way or another, someone will try to track you and your usage online. And most of this is done by your phone being tracked, tapped, or monitored. Although all of them could not be personal or political, some might have to do with data theft and marketing.
Not everyone is a skilled hacker or coder, so they have to use existing spyware in the market to spy on your phone. If so, there are many ways to find this.
How To Tell If Your Phone Is Being Tracked, Tapped, or Monitored by a Spy Software
Phone warming up very quickly
All those processes running on the background will require a lot of processing power. So if there are any background spying activities, your phone will warm up pretty quickly even when not in use. This is the most common symptom of spyware running in the background.
Battery drains pretty quickly
Quick battery drains are common on aged phones. But if your phone is brand new and you experiencing faster battery drains all of a sudden, then there is a great chance that there is a background spying activity running. The heating up of your phone will also cause the battery to drain quickly. But most of the time, it should be the background process.
Hear unusual sounds while in calls
If you hear some unusual sounds like clicking, or some voices (usually as if in the distance), then it’s a definite sign of someone tapping your calls. Technology has grown a lot, especially in the phone calls department. So it’s not natural to get a broken or disordered voice in phone calls, especially when all calls nowadays are using VoLTE technology.
See a drastic increase in data usage
If your data usage is abnormal and enormous than usual, then this could be a sign of spyware running on your device. You’ll get such usage because the spyware is sending various data from your phone to the person who is tracking you. Hence this results in increased traffic.
As a result, you might also find your network speed is very slow and not as responsive. At least not fast as it was before. Normal apps like Youtube or Netflix will take much time to load because of engaged traffic.
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Receiving unusual text messages
If someone has remote access to your phone, then he might be sending commands through your text messaging services. Because even if you’re not online or (internet), you’ll receive text messages through SMS services. So this would be the way for them to communicate with your phone. As a result, you may receive strange messages containing random texts or numbers.
Sometimes you’ll receive calls from random numbers too, although the latter is uncommon.
The phone wakes automatically
When you lock your screen and keep your phone aside, then the phone should be in that condition unless it receives any calls or notifications. If you see your phone waking up without any notification or sound of any sort, then there is a chance that someone is having remote access to your device.
If your phone shows activity even if it’s not in use, this is a symptom of the phone being controlled by a third person.
Taking too long to shut down
The shutting down of your phone involves completely closing down your apps and services. So if there is any spyware running in the background, your phone will take longer than usual to shut itself down. If your phone is behaving like this, then there is a great possibility that there are Spywares working in the background.
How To Find Spyware On Your Device
If you think you have spyware running on your system, then you should confirm it before taking any destructive actions. If any spyware is installed, you can find it under the Apps list on your phone. Although the spyware will disguise itself under any other name and icon, we can somehow spot it.
Searching apps list: If the spyware is installed on your phone, you can check them by going into Settings>Apps and notification. Although in the list, the spyware wouldn’t show itself instead, it may show the icon and name of other legitimate apps.
You can also look into Battery > Battery Usage to track which app is using more battery. If you spot an app that you don’t use often using more battery, it might be the culprit.
Searching Running processes: If the spyware is running in the background, it might show up in the list of running processes in the settings app. Go to Settings > System > Developer options > Running processes. Look for any suspicious processes running. If any of them are running, remember it and remove it from the apps list.
Note: You have to enable Developer mode first by going into Settings > About phone and repeatedly tapping on the Build No.
The processes of installing spyware on the iPhone are trickier than android. Because the iPhone has a closed ecosystem. Because of that, the only way to install any app is through the Appstore. But some people can install certain apps after jailbreaking their iOS devices.
So if you spot any apps on your phone that you don’t remember installing, then there might be a chance that your phone is being tracked or tapped. Search if the app is available in the AppStore. If it’s not available, it must be spyware. So the best option to get rid of it is by updating your phone, as updating your phone will patch any previous exploits and will remove the spyware.
Note: Cydia or Pangu is not spyware. But these programs are used to jailbreak your iOS device to install the actual spyware.
From Expert’s Desk
So to conclude, these are the signs and symptoms you should look for if you think your phone is being tracked, tapped, or monitored by spyware. However, you have to be careful about what apps you install and from where you install it.
It is always recommended to get apps only from trusted sources like play store or AppStore.
If you find out that you were being spied, it is good to change all of your passwords using another device. Also, don’t forget to log out your phone from all sites and apps.
The final step on clearing will be performing a factory reset after backing up only the important stuff. It is also better to reinstall the official ROM or Flash file into the phone and remove the existing one. For more security, install the latest security patches in your phone.