We live in an age of mass surveillance, and nothing has been affected more than our privacy. In the old days, phones were tapped to listen in to the calls. That has changed.
In today’s modern world, phones are bugged to gain access to text messages, emails, browsing history, photos and GPS location, just to mention a few. The privacy we once used to enjoy is no more.
What even disturbs more is that the people who are being spied on don’t even know such things exist. If you are reading this, you must have had your own suspicions, which led us to the question,
how can you tell if your phone has been tapped?
With the most sophisticated spyware, the clues can be subtle, but they are always there. You just need to know what to look for. Main signs include reduced battery life, unexplained increase in data usage and weird texts from an unknown number.
Possible Clues That Indicate Your Phone Is Tapped
Phone tapping occurs at all levels. It could be because of political reasons, national intelligence reasons or even personal marital issues. In both cases, the practice is not advisable, and it’s against the law.
If you think you have enough reasons to doubt whether your cell phone has been bugged, here are some clues to substantiate your worries.
Reduce battery life
Spyware work by constantly recording activities on your phone. This happens even if your cell phone is idle. The collected information is periodically sent to a third party, normally the hacker.
The end result is unusual reduced battery life due to constant background activities running in your phone. More so, some of this software are complex and ‘heavy’, and as such, they tend to consume a lot of power.
You can easily test to see if your battery is damaged or if your worries are true. Fully charge your battery and then place it in a different phone of the same model.
Observe the time it takes for the battery to drain empty. Is it the same? If yes, then you are safe; your phone battery is probably damaged.
Unusual background noise during a call
In the old days, while using the analogue network presence of static and clicking sounds in your phone call conversation indicated that your phone was bugged. In today’s digital world, things have changed a bit.
If you hear a fragmentary voice during a call in a digital network, it could suggest that someone is potentially recording your phone call.
Phone taking forever to shutdown
Is your phone taking too long to shut down? Well, I hate to break it to you; someone may be trying to snoop into your business. Just like computers, mobile phones must also complete processing any open tasks before shutting down.
A phone taking too long than usual to shut down after a call or browsing on the internet could be a sign that it is tapped. The delayed shut down is due to spyware transmitting collected data to a third party.
Unexplained increase in data usage
Are you receiving abnormally high phone bills, yet your usage is the same? This could be a potential clue that your phone has been tapped. Depending on the type of data being sent, spyware may use your mobile data to send the information to a third party.
This will lead to increased phone bills. To be safe, check for unexplained data usage signs if you find any, disable data usage for that specific app and uninstall it.
Receiving weird texts
Receiving unusual texts containing strange random numbers, symbols, and characters could suggest your phone has been bugged. You will often receive these weird texts if the spyware is malfunctioning.
Don’t fall victim to unrecognized links sent to your phone. These links are usually for fake websites; for example, your bank’s website aimed at luring you into giving them your personal information. Never open such links; instead, forward them to the concerned authorities.
Phone getting warm/hot when not in use.
Spyware software continuously running in the background. And since they perform complex tasks of retrieving information from your phone and sending them over to a third party, they tend to use a lot of processing power.
This will result in your phone getting warm even if you are not using the phone. It is also important to note that even without using your phone, it will get warm if you are in a hot place. So, don’t confuse the two scenarios.
Phone showing activity when not in use.
Is your mobile phone lighting up the screen when not in use? Or rebooting itself? These could be potential signs that someone is trying to invade your privacy.
Such clues suggest that someone has remote access to your mobile device. Precaution should be taken immediately to avoid further damage.
How To Find And Remove Spyware Software On Your Phone
So you have just realized that your mobile phone has a couple of discussed signs, what next? The next logical step would be to perform a security check to identify the spyware and remove it.
Methods of finding and removing spyware vary depending on the manufacture and whether your mobile phone is Android or ios.
It is possible to find spyware on your phone by looking into the file directory. If you find suspicious-looking files, immediately delete them. Normally, they have weird titles that you can’t miss.
You can also use anti-spying software available in Google Play Store. They scan your phone and perform a full security check removing all malware present. And the good part is, most anti-spying software are free.
The way ios mobile phones work is quite different; the operating system is quite complicated. You can’t install anti-spy software directly on their devices. You will need a mac/PC to perform the scan.
Another trick is upgrading to the latest version of the OS. This will remove any external software from your ios phone.
In both cases, restoring your phone’s to factory settings will remove any malware present in your phone. Just remember to back up your data before the operation.
Ways To Protect Your Cellphone From Being Tapped
With today’s cell phones and the internet, it has become even easier to be hacked. A wireless connection makes it feasible and hassle-free for spies to get remote access to your phone. It is, therefore, essential that you are equipped with the knowledge of how to prevent your phone from being bugged.
Installing anti-spy software
This is a great prevention measure that you could take. Don’t wait until your cellphone is bugged for you to start looking for anti-spy software.
Download the software from a trusted online website and follow the necessary instructions to install it. You could further tighten your security by setting up a security password.
Turning your cell phone off
Whenever you are not using your phone, you are advised to switch it off. This will deny the hacker constant access to your phone records and text messages. Switching off your cell phone will also help you determine if really you have been bugged.
As discussed earlier, if you realize that your phone is taking too long to shut down, it could suggest that it has been tapped.
Switching Bluetooth off
Always switch off your Bluetooth connection when not in use. Never accept a wireless connection, including WI-FI from a source you don’t know. Hacker can easily gain access to your phone using Bluetooth or WI-FI connection.
Also, make an effort to disabling your GPS location when not using it. Some could easily find your location and cause harm if they are violently targeting you.
Anti-spy apps That You Will Find Helpful
The internet is filled with numerous anti-spy software designed to perform specific functions in fighting illegal phone tapping. Here are a few that we thought could be of help to you.
iAmNotifed anti-spy system
the software protects your phone from physical access. To use it, start the application and lock the screen. If someone tries to access your phone, it will display threatening notifications like ’last lock time’. This will definitely scare the person away.
it is a great security tool for iOS users. It allows you to block dangerous pages and content from the internet. Such unwanted content could steal data or, worse, create unwanted ads.
Anti-spy: camera & Microphone
You may have noticed that some applications request access to your microphone and camera. Anti-spy software helps prevent such kind of surveillance if the application is intended to bug your device.
it stops ransomware attacks and shields your phone’s programme from hackers.
Cell Spy Catcher
the application detects any potential malware, and when found, you are alerted by a red screen or sound. Immediately turn off your cellphone if notified.
With advanced and new emerging technologies, more powerful spyware are being developed each day. And it has become even more difficult to detect them.
You should always be on the lookout for the tell-tale signs. It is also recommended to install anti-spying software from trusted sources to keep your phone safe from hackers.