Is your mobile device acting weird lately? Do you suspect your phone might have spyware?
This article will teach how to find hidden spyware on your Android phone in just a few simple steps.
In a previous post we highlighted some of the most popular spy apps for Android phones. If you think someone has installed one on your phone, here’s how you can find it and remove it.
There are three ways to find hidden spyware on your Android mobile device.
The first one is through your Android applications, and the second is through downloads.
Finally, I’ll show you how to do this using a spyware removal tool.
1. Go to “My Files” or “Files” on your device. To find hidden spyware, start where they can hide from plain sight. The “Files” section of smartphones contains traces of spyware through files that cannot be opened.
2. Click on “Downloads.”
3. Uninstall any suspicious files. Scroll through all the files that you have downloaded. Immediately delete files that you do not recognize.
If you had a hard time with manual removal, turn to spyware-removing tools. Antivirus programs help you find hidden spyware faster.
Using spyware removal tools ensures you delete every malicious file on your Android device.
Follow these steps:
While the Internet has given us access to a lot of amazing & awesome stuff, malicious files lurk around.
Smartphones changed the way we live. We tend to store our personal and sensitive information on our Android phones. This makes our phones a likely target for spyware infection.
Spyware is malicious software that aims to steal personal information and sensitive data.
It compromises device security by stealing credentials.
An Android phone with spyware could be sending username, bank account login details, and credit card information directly to cybercriminals.
There are four types of spyware, namely keyloggers, trojans, adware, and tracking cookies.
The goal of spy apps is to access your most personal information without your knowledge nor your consent.
Spyware is designed to be hidden and to avoid being discovered. It snoops around sensitive data such as usernames, passwords, banking details, and location.
The scary thing here is that malicious people and cybercriminals can easily access this information for their own gain.
Not only this, but spy apps also record and learn from the internet surfer habits of the Android user.
Since spyware runs in the background, they also use data. Even if an Android user is not using his/her data, spyware can use the data, thus increasing the phone bill.
This spyware has it all.
From tracking social media activities, SMS, and monitoring GPS locations, FlexiSpy is deemed to be the best spying application for both an Android phone and iPhone alike.
Employers often use monitoring programs such as these on their employees.
In the workplace, employers are allowed to use programs like this to monitor how employees use the computer and cell phones provided by the company.
This Android spyware is user-friendly and has powerful monitoring capabilities.
PhoneSpector can gather records such as incoming and outgoing calls, text messages, and GPS location. It can also recover deleted SMS messages.
Out of all the spy apps, Auto Forward is deemed as the one most suitable for parents. This spyware is designed for those who are NOT tech-savvy.
The installation process is straightforward and easy-to-follow.
All monitoring features in Auto Forward are done remotely, which minimizes the risk of this hidden spyware on Android phones being discovered.
The same features which make it appealing for parents create distress in the owner of the target device.
This spyware has built a reputation for tracking all activities on an Android phone. It is known to be compatible with both iOS and Android operating systems.
This application monitors the web history of browsers and records the information from private messaging apps.
Spyware is designed to be hidden from the user of the cell phone. Fortunately, there are a lot of signs to help you find hidden spyware. These signs indicate a spyware infection on an Android phone.
To find out if someone tapped your phone with spy apps, look for the following signs.
If you have noticed your Android device is acting weird lately, there is a chance it is infected. Other examples include:
If the issue is not resolved, then it’s time to conduct a hunt to find hidden spyware on your Android phone.
This might just be the first symptom that you will notice. Your Android phone is suddenly SLOW and buggy.
Applications take longer to load, and your operating system feels like it’s out-of-date.
Spyware on Android will cause your applications to freeze unexpectedly.
If you have been experiencing a buggy OS and your phone crashing, there is a good chance hidden spyware on Android is to blame.
Do you hear any beeping or some static during phone calls?
If yes, someone might be tapping into your calls.
However, do not immediately assume the worst. It can also be that you are in a place where the signal is spotty, or the other person is.
If those are not the case, start being wary. Call recording by other people produces background noises, and you will hear this during your conversations.
Hidden spyware on Android RUNS QUIETLY in the background.
While it stays invisible from the naked eye, you can still find hidden spyware on your cell phone. We all have an idea of our normal battery usage, right?
If you notice your device is constantly overheating or losing power faster, there might be some spyware on your phone.
As always, do not forget to consider other causes as well. Your cell phone may just have an old battery. A new app you installed can be the cause of the battery drain as well.
You can check the battery usage of each app in the Settings.
If neither is the case, you can be sure that the quick loss of battery power is caused by malicious spyware.
If you see NEW files or applications you do not recognize, chances are, your phone has spyware.
You might see a new homepage display. If your phone keeps downloading random files, these signs can indicate spyware on Android.
If you notice a higher consumption than how much you usually use, spyware might be running in the background.
We advise you to use the steps above to locate spyware on your phone. Remove them as early as possible because higher data means a higher phone bill for you.
Do you get authentication codes from Facebook and Instagram when you did not open the apps?
It is strange to receive a random text message containing nothing but symbols and codes.
If you receive codes that you did not ask for, it is a clear sign that someone else is trying to access your account without your knowledge and consent.
While cell phone spy apps are becoming trickier, there are classic ways to prevent having hidden spyware on Android.
Many antivirus programs require a subscription before you can use their basic protection features.
Well, that is not the case with Avast.
On top of it being free, this software has excellent antivirus protection, a network security scanner, password manager, browser protection, and more.
This software is particularly effective against spyware.
Avast detects any advertising trackers on your current window. You have the option to block some or automatically block all trackers on all sites, including search engines.
To install Avast Free Antivirus on your Android, simply go to Google Play Store and download the app there.
McAfee antivirus software defends against 100 percent of malware downloads.
Not only this, but McAfee is particularly effective against trojans. This means that it is successful in blocking spyware that steals one’s banking credentials.
And lastly, McAfee automatically determines if an ad or a pop-up is dangerous. This way, you would not have to run security scans every time an ad appears on your screen.
To find hidden spyware, go to Google Play Store and download McAfee Mobile Security.
Norton Security offers outstanding spyware protection.
It has a unique feature called “App Advisor.” This protects your Android device against suspicious apps. App Advisor has privacy warnings integrated into the Play Store.
While Norton is a paid app, it more than makes up for it through its full slate of anti-theft tools. This includes a password manager, web protection, and a VPN.
If you want to subscribe to Norton Security, simply download the app from Play Store and pay through in-app purchases.
Sadly, yes. An Android smartphone is the most vulnerable to spyware.
When it comes to other Android devices such as a smartwatch, smart TV, and others, the risk is much lower.
The good news here is, once you properly secure your cell phone, other connected devices are also safe.
Spyware comes from four sources: malicious apps, scams, malvertising emails, and direct-to-device downloads.
All of these compromise our privacy.
Out of the four, scams in emails are the most dangerous as they can involve loss of money and hacking banking credentials.
It is important to remember that all kinds of 100 percent free apps are usually just malware in disguise. As they say, prevention is better than cure.
Performing a factory reset is the last resort. If none of the options we listed above works for you, you can do a factory reset.
Remember, a reset removes all of the user data on an Android device, including the spyware. It restores the device to its factory settings. [R]
Backup all your important stuff on your smartphone. You can also back up your files on a PC.
In order for you to perform a factory reset, follow these steps:
It’s a difficult task to detect spyware. Breaching privacy becomes easier with the amount of personal information we share.
Malicious apps might already be invading our smartphones, and we would not be aware of it.
As spyware becomes more advanced, our smartphones and devices become more vulnerable. The fastest solution is to remove spyware as early as possible.
Once you start noticing any unusual behavior on your smartphone, set out to find hidden spyware right away.
We hope that this article has taught you a thing or two about protecting your privacy. Let us know what you think in the comments below!
Jason is a work from home dad who has a passion for DIY projects, yard work, and SEC Football. His background is IT, but he's always fancied himself as a part-time ship welder, landscaper, and short order cook. During the week he can be found on his laptop 10 hours-a-day, but on the weekends he escapes to the local DIY Cave to play with REAL toys. You can also find him on Facebook, Twitter, and can contact him via email.