You’ve might have heard of it and some of you have possibly experienced the consequences of having cell spy software installed on your device without even knowing it. The possibility of remote cell phone spying using hidden software is non-existent and in fact, there are many apps being advertised and used for that purpose yet all of them fail to deliver what it is being advertised.
The reasons that remote install is not possible are many and we will go into details on why it cannot happen without some kind of previous user interaction. Most of the modern cell phones come with a locked operating system. Factory restricted access to the system prevents any kind of unauthorised remote access and makes such access to sensitive data stored on the device virtually impossible. Not to mention that it is completely illegal to install spying software without the owner’s knowledge.
The best rule to follow is that you do not browse through online content you’re not sure of and to follow simple guidelines which we will further discuss in our guide. We will also explain how most of the harmful software operates and how you can take measures to protect your devices from unauthorised data breaches.
Is my device safe from remote installs of spying software?
You can be sure that your brand-new phone is clean and secure from unauthorised access as long as you bought it from a retail store which is authorised to sell devices from the manufacturers. Buying from shady eBay dealers or any other place at suspiciously low prices could spell trouble for the authenticity and safety of the software that comes pre-installed on the device. Some of the Chinese-based online retailers are well-known for installing malware and harmful software which sends private user data and logs activity which is sent to remote servers.
Android phones which are rooted are automatically susceptible to security risks and it wouldn’t matter that the devices are running the latest security patches and the latest operating system if the harmful app gets installed. The same goes for Apple devices which are jailbroken. Their security is thus compromised.
The amount of data that can be monitored and transmitted to a remote location is staggering. Complete phonebooks, messaging, emails, IM apps chat history and even sensitive credit card information – all of that information can be stolen remotely given the right circumstances.
How to best protect yourself from the spy software?
First of all, make sure not to install any software that is not from the official app store from your device. For Android it is the Google Play store, for Apple users, it is iTunes store and for Windows phones, there is the official Windows Store.
Even though you will install apps from the official online store some of them come with inbuilt advertisements. This can be a serious security concern too since the links of those ads can lead straight to the installation of harmful spy software. The same goes for browsing websites and clicking on tempting headlines which can also lead to the installation of malware apps.
There is absolutely no way to remotely install remote spy software on any device without some sort of local user input.
Do not leave Bluetooth connection set to always on and if you must – in order to use your connected Bluetooth devices – make sure to make your device Bluetooth visibility switched off. Do not accept Bluetooth connection requests from unknown devices. This is a great way to allow unauthorised remote access to your device and all of your sensitive data stored on it.
When it comes to Wi-Fi connections over unknown and open routers they equally pose a danger to the security of your device. Do not connect to routers and access points that you do not recognise and that do not have any sort of password protection. Surfing online over unsecured connection will expose your login information and potentially allow hackers to steal your identity.
Ignore the temptation to click on the links that offer something expensive for free and just for you. There is no such thing as free stuff without something in return. In this case, a simple click can turn your sensitive data from being private to being in someone else’s possession. This is how most digital ransom schemes work. There is plenty of extortion happening because phones and computers get locked by spy software and then the hackers demand payment to unlock and return data to the owners.
The main warning signs that your device is running malware is if you are constantly seeing nagging screens that warn you how your security is compromised or if you notice that your phone is constantly uploading something over your data connection even when you’re not using it.
Make sure that you only install the applications from the official stores. Do not root or jailbreak your device. This will disrupt the inbuilt security measures and it will make your device vulnerable. Only surf over secured connections!
Install some of the popular system monitoring tools and antivirus software which will show you which of the apps are using the most memory and are active and always running in the background on your device. Spy software works in the background to monitor all user activity so it should be visible in the process monitoring tools.
Install apps that will also show you the network traffic your device makes when it is connected to any type of network. The apps which look unfamiliar to you and which have constant data usage are the possible malware or spyware apps that are installed on your device.
The only thing to do in such cases is to check the list of installed apps and try to manually remove them from the inbuilt device application manager found in the settings. However, if the spy software is installed and hidden then you would have to find it manually. If you still suspect that your device is monitored but you can’t find the cause of it then it is best to completely wipe the device clean with a factory reset.
Do not follow links which pop up on your cell phone which promise the same and prompt you to fill your credit card details. These are the ways scammers operate! Be careful! Stay safe online!
So how does spying software work?
Spy software exists for any device capable of running any type of software code and in fact, there are plenty paid monitoring solutions that people use every day. People turn to such software when there are security concerns for their children, their property or even their personal safety. These types of professional monitoring tools are put to good purpose and with the knowledge of the owners of the monitored devices.
Most of the spy software works by monitoring users activity on the target devices and collects all of that information for later analysis and viewing. Most of the current generation monitoring tools include an inbuilt functionality to remotely send the data to remote servers, view Emails and SMS messages too. Some of the most advanced ones have the ability to track devices in real-time using the inbuilt GPS modules and relay every second of the tracked devices to a remote viewer on a detailed map.
Most of the premium cell spy tools offer an online user interface where every single activity on the target device is displayed just as it happens in real-time. These services accept PayPal and have an established user base so if you need their services make sure that they are verified.
In case you decide to use some of the legit device monitoring/spy software make sure to get in touch with the company offering such service and check their online user feedback. Google their company name and see what their users have to say about the quality of the company and its products.
Most of the customers using these monitoring applications have serious security concerns for their children and want to make sure that they are safe when they are not in their proximity. With geofencing – concerned parents can even set virtual boundaries and get notified when they stray outside of it.
To conclude our findings and ease your worries we have to point out that the chances that your device and your own digital security get compromised are very low if you adhere to these simple rules. No one can externally gain control over your phone or your private data unless you allow them too. The funny thing is that most of those harmful programs ask you just that – to click the “Allow” button to grant them full access to all your stuff. By staying vigilant and adhering to basic security protocols it is virtually impossible to get monitored remotely.
In case that you would like to hire monitoring services for your devices, we suggest that you opt for tried and tested premium software companies that allow money back guarantee so that you can try and see if the service suits your needs. For those that stumble upon websites which offer free spying/monitoring software – steer away from them. They are sure to be some sort of a scam and will only take your money and do you more damage than you can imagine.