Detect Spyware on Your iPhone

Edited by Shelley, Anonymous, Eng

With great power, comes great responsibility. And with a great phone, comes great worry. The more we're connected with the world, the more vulnerable we've become. And with the advent of cloud and online data storage, one can never be completely sure of their data being secure. And with cyber attackers scaling new heights of expertise everyday, the concern becomes even more legitimate.

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Cyber attackers today, more than ever, find it extremely easy to tap into someone else's phone. This newfound sense of ease is a direct consequence of us doing every single transaction of ours via our mobile, from recharging phone to transferring money. Our increasing dependence on smartphones is indeed a source of joy to some. After those panic-inducing words, let me provide some relief. Your iPhone is safe. It might be difficult to detect spyware, but it sure isn't impossible. To do that, you need to understand what exactly spyware is.

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Simply put, spyware is software that's designed to gather information about you without your consent or knowledge, and transfer that information from your device. They advertise themselves as harmless apps, luring you to download and install them, or they can be included as a by-product of something else you might have installed. Once installed, spyware not only steals your information, it also uses your very own internet connection to transfer data to its homebase. And since it functions as an independent program, it has access to your hard drive and chats.

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Remember those 'license agreements' notices that pop up every time you try to install a new program? Remember how we're always in a hurry to click the 'I Agree to the Terms and conditions' icon without even reading them? Well, it turns out that many license agreements specifically mention that spyware will be installed along with the software. In short, you might have willingly installed spyware on your beloved iPhone.

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Identifying the Symptoms

Spyware leaves evidence indicating its presence. Here are some clues, so pay close attention.

  1. 1
    Internet data pack gets exhausted quickly.
    Remember I'd told you how spyware uses your internet connection to transfer data from your phone? Well, one of the foremost consequences of the same will be a faster consumption of your data pack. So, keep an eye on how quickly your data pack is getting exhausted.
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  2. 2
    Getting unwanted/weird text messages.
    Are you getting weird SMS's that show nothing but numbers and symbols? Well, that's solid proof right there. More often than not, these messages are a result of badly configured commands sent to target your phones. And since they're poorly configured, they become visible.
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  3. 3
    Faster battery drain.
    But I'd just charged my iPhone a few hours back!' How many times have you, too, voiced the exact same sentiment? Faster battery drainage can be a direct indication of an existing spyware. However, you don't have to panic every time your battery drains. Your legitimate apps might also weigh heavily on your battery.
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  4. 4
    Phone switches on and off randomly.
    Has your phone started acting random as of late? Does it switch on and off again and again? Good apps don't induce such a behavior. More often than not, it's the spyware at work.
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  5. 5
    Strange sounds in the background.
    Do you also hear strange noises in the background every time you are talking to someone? While we've all faced such a situation, and an occasional phenomena can be blamed on poor connectivity, you need to act cautious if it persists. In a worst case scenario, background noise denotes that your conversation is being recorded.
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  6. 6
    Phone becoming heated.
    People who your phone want to know what's happening around the clock, so spyware works 24x7 in the background. This can cause your phone to heat up.
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Panicking won't help. Awareness will. If you really want to protect your iPhone from all the unwanted elements, all you have to do is take some simple steps.

Anti-Spyware Installation

Detection and removal of unwanted programs:

  1. 1
    On the home screen, tap the iTunes app store on your iPhone and launch the application.
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    Preetam Kaushik photo 1 (4).PNG
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  2. 2
    Tap the 'Search' option.
    Preetam Kaushik photo 2 (5).PNG
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  3. 3
    Type 'Anti-spyware' in the text field and Press 'Search' button' on your keyboard.
    Preetam Kaushik photo 3 (4).PNG
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  4. 4
    You will get a list of different anti-spyware applications on your iPhone screen.
    Choose and Download any app you need. Press the 'Get' button.
    Preetam Kaushik photo 4 (4).PNG
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  5. 5
    You will then be asked to sign-in to iTunes Store.
    Preetam Kaushik photo 1 (5).PNG
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  6. 6
    After signing-in, the download will be completed.
    Preetam Kaushik photo 2 (6).PNG
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  7. 7
    The downloaded app will now be displayed on your home screen.
    Preetam Kaushik photo 3 (5).PNG
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  8. 8
    On your home screen, open the app by tapping it.
    After opening the app, the anti-spyware will start processing, look for any unwanted content or suspicious programs running on your iPhone, and remove them.
    Preetam Kaushik photo 4 (5).PNG
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  9. 9
    Remove any suspicious programs or spyware if found.
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Additional Safety Measures

  1. 1
    Turn the Bluetooth off when not using it.
    You may never know what medium the spyware is using to transfer data.
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  2. 2
    Take off your battery when not using the phone.
    I know it sounds a little too extreme, but waste not, want not. Removing the battery may switch off the app and thus hamper the data transfer process.
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  3. 3
    Download data and apps only from trusted sources.
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  4. 4
    Protect your phone with the strongest password possible.
    Use an array of combinations to improve your chances against threats.
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  5. 5
    Make sure you keep your phone up to date.
    Download all possible operating system updates.
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Taking precautions is easy. All you need to do is thoroughly analyze every app/ringtone/data before downloading it. Your iPhone is your lifeline to the outside world. I guess that's the least you can do.

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Questions and Answers

Hello, I loaned my Android to someone and then found that all of my contacts were deleted, what could that be?, thank you, Anthony?

The woman asked if I could loan her my Android for a moment, all of my contacts were deleted. I believe that she wanted to gain access to my Wells Fargo Account, and turned all apps off, WiFi, Bluetooth, Google, any location services. I however still don't know if she has access to my email account even though I do not believe that this particular phone has any connection with any of my computer accounts. I check my bank account for fraud often but have found nothing as of yet. All contacts are deleted and there are funny noises and strange disconnects from time to time on the phone. I have tried: I have replaced the SIM card on the phone but this of course could not recover any contacts. I think it was caused by: I allowed someone else access to the phone who is not an honorable person, I believe she makes her living by accumulating information about people and trying to gain access to their bank accounts

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Article Info

Categories : IPhone

Recent edits by: Anonymous, Shelley

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