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In the following blog post, we explain how to determine if your phone has been hacked. Here’s what you should look out for:
6 Ways To Tell If Your iPhone Is Hacked
By following and checking the points on this list, you can easily and quickly determine whether or not your iPhone is hacked. Note that some of these are not definitive signs, but rather indicators of a potential security breach.
1. A malware scan finds spyware installed
One of the best ways to determine if your iPhone is hacked is to run a malware scan. Antivirus apps for iOS are quite limited as Apple’s operating system does not allow them to access areas of the device where malware typically hides.
However, alternative tools are available which allow you to perform a full malware scan by connecting your iPhone to your computer. We recommend Certo AntiSpy, the award winning anti-spyware tool for iPhones.
2. Your battery doesn’t last as long as it used to
It’s normal for a battery to wear down over time and become less efficient, but that’s over a period of years. If you’ve only had your phone for a few months and the battery life is poor, this could be a sign that something is wrong.
A phone’s battery draining too quickly can be an indication that there’s something going on in the background. This could just mean that there’s a setting you need to change, or it could mean that your phone has been hacked and your privacy has been compromised.
3. High data usage
Most of us don’t use all of our data every month, but if you’ve been hitting your data usage limit on a regular basis and aren’t sure how, it might be a sign of something fishy.
If your phone is hacked, hidden software or malicious apps running on your iPhone could be connecting to the internet and passing your information onto third parties, which will quickly munch through your data usage.
4. Suspicious apps on your phone
Be vigilant for any apps on your phone that you don’t remember downloading. Hackers only need physical access to your phone for just a few minutes to install spyware apps that can be used to send your personal data, messages, photos and more to a third party.
Check your phone regularly for unfamiliar apps, and immediately delete any that you find. Make sure you check any app folders too, as hackers can sometimes try to hide malicious apps there.
5. Someone has jailbroken your iPhone
This is a little more advanced, but if you’ve noticed some suspicious apps on your phone that weren’t there before (namely an app called ‘Cydia’) then this likely means that your iPhone is jailbroken and it is a pretty sure sign of phone hacking.
Cydia is an app that requires access to the device in order to be installed and if you didn’t install it, then it means someone else did.
Jailbreaking a device opens up a whole host of options for phone hackers to retrieve data and monitor your device remotely.
6. Enterprise or developer apps are installed
With iOS, it’s possible to get around Apple’s security systems by allowing a device to use developer versions of software. This is usually reserved for apps that aren’t ready to be released to the public yet, or if you work for a company that has an internal app for business use. Nonetheless, it can also be a way for hackers to get around the system.
If you have an enterprise or developer app installed on your iPhone that you don’t remember installing, then it’s quite possible that your phone is hacked.
How Do iPhones Get Hacked?
Many iPhone users believe that they are safe behind an Apple product. Some go as far to argue that the phone’s inability to be hacked is one of its greatest advantages over the competition. However, this is simply not the case. The truth is, while iPhones are in fact safer and more secure than many other mobile devices, they are still susceptible to phone hacking.
Here are a number of ways that you can fall victim to phone hacking.
1. Clicking suspicious links
While Apple and other tech companies work hard to implement virus and malware protection into their operating systems, it doesn’t provide much security when manually clicking a suspicious link. These can be designed by a hacker to violate your privacy and obtain your private information. So avoid links with weird spellings, odd-looking logos, and any that aren’t secure — especially when using public Wi-Fi connections which are more vulnerable to attacks.
A common strategy phone hackers use involves attempting to impersonate a well-known brand that you are likely to trust without much thought. They’ll set up a website and copy the design, then host it on a URL that is almost identical to that of which they’re attempting to copy. The site will then coerce you toward one of these malicious links, allowing the hacker to gain access to your financial information and other login credentials.
Always double-check the website URL. If it seems suspicious, it most likely is. Another tip is to use a virtual private network (VPN) when browsing to protect your personal information and make your phone less vulnerable to attacks.
2. Targeted attacks
Most times we think of being hacked as something you may fall victim to by chance. But this ignores the existence of targeted attacks, which happen frequently.
A targeted attack is an invasion of privacy by a virus or malware that is directed at a specific person. People in the public eye are far more likely to be attacked this way. It can, however, happen to anyone at any time.
3. Downloading malicious apps
There’s no doubt that Apple does a good job of monitoring the App Store. They are known for being strict on who and what is allowed to be published. But it’s only inevitable that some things may slip through the net.
Most of the time, it can be pretty easy to know whether an app is trustworthy or not. An app that is painfully slow, has an outdated look, or obvious glitches shouldn’t be trusted, especially if it’s requesting access to your phone’s camera, microphone and location.
Be sure to check reviews before you download apps from the App Store and delete any apps that make you question their trustworthiness.
4. Using weak passwords
Websites that you visit and log in to frequently — whether it be social media, a work platform, or something else — should be done so with a secure and unique password. Many tend to opt for a password they can quickly and easily log in with, and often use the same for a number of sites.
When creating new online accounts, do your best to avoid the urge of simply recycling a version of your go-to password, since this puts you at risk of phone hacking. Instead, choose complex passwords with a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and special symbols.
You could also consider using a secure password manager, such as LastPass, which generates and remembers different passwords for you and is accessed via just one ‘master password.’
If there’s the functionality to set up two factor authentication, this is highly recommended. This requires you to input both your password and another piece of information to access an account. This could be a verification code sent to your phone by text message, or Face or Touch ID.
This advanced verification process makes it much harder for hackers to access your device.
The Easy Way to Check if Your iPhone Is Hacked
So you think your phone is hacked. What can you do about it?
Wipe all your data with a factory reset? Get a new phone? Throw it in the trash? Thankfully, the answer is much simpler.
Use Certo AntiSpy
Certo AntiSpy is the best way to find out if your phone has been hacked and remove any threats quickly and efficiently, giving you peace of mind.
Here’s are some of its key features and benefits:
- It’s quick and easy: Quickly discover if your iOS device has been hacked, compromised or bugged with Certo AntiSpy’s one-click scanning.
- Spyware detection: Using advanced detection techniques, you can quickly find out if you have a spyware infection on your device, and whether people are snooping on your phone calls or text messages.
- Jailbreak detection: Certo AntiSpy can detect if a jailbreak has been installed and your phone’s security restrictions have been removed, regardless of whether the hacker has tried to hide it or not.
- Tracking app detection: Easily find out which apps are tracking your location or accessing your microphone or phone camera. Certo will also alert you if any malicious apps are installed that are known to be used by hackers when tracking someone’s location.
- Threat removal: Safely remove any threats found on your iPhone and take back control of your privacy.
Stop hackers for good
Combat spyware and cyber threats with Certo AntiSpy, the world's leading anti-spyware tool for iPhones.