Post Menu and Details.
- How to block hackers from my phone.
- How to know if my phone is hacked?
- Purchases you haven't made will appear on your credit card.
Reading time: ~8 minutes
The mobile phone makes our life easier by posting our updates on various social media. Every day we navigate the route through maps through the city. Apple or Google Pay are helping us to switch to cashless. Cell phones are present in all areas of our modern life. So much so that we trust them with all of our secrets, bank accounts, intimate photos, and videos.
But you might be wondering what happens if my device is hacked? How do I prevent hackers from accessing my phone? Leaked celebrity private photos prove it: Hackers can break into your smartphone, including cameras and a microphone. In addition to spying on you, hackers will have access to all financial information such as bank accounts, all your files, photos, and videos. Even geolocation can be recorded.
The danger of hacking your phone has become a common and rational fear. The hard truth is, it is now possible to hack any phone. With the advancement of technology, where knowledge and information technology improves understanding of the technology, hackers can hack even some of the most advanced phone software.
It is important to know that there is an increase in the number of hackers, described as a booming industry. Do you realize that your phone can be hacked with a common software bug, and anyone can hear your conversations? Be well informed that hackers can overhear your conversations even when you are not on your mobile phone? Yes, surprisingly, hackers can activate your phone’s speakerphone and send it to a corporate spy several hundred meters away.
Your mobile phone is no different from other general-purpose computers. In other words, malicious individuals can exploit you to steal or access your information at your expense. Whether it’s theft of your money or general victimization, an unsecured mobile phone can be a recipe for misery.
How to block hackers from my phone.
Use a strong screen lock.
You can set a security lock on all mobile phones. When someone picks up the phone, they cannot easily access your apps or find your information. Blocking it like this is an essential way to keep Android phones safe from hackers. However, it is even more important to choose a type of lock that offers the right security level.
The traditional PIN code is very secure. Using at least a 6-digit code is recommended, but a 4-digit code is pretty strong. There are a million possible combinations with a six-digit combination for a password, while there are fourteen thousand. Since most mobile phones have limited guesswork before the device crashes or self-wiping, this is more than enough.
Using a biometric lock can be tempting, i.e., fingerprints or facial recognition but think about it because facial recognition can still be tricked in many cases. Not to mention, someone can unlock the phone by pointing it at their face or forcing you to put your finger on the scanner. Pattern locks can also be a problem, especially if you leave the pattern smeared on the screen.
Don’t download apps from your website or use questionable app stores.
Quality control measures are in place in the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store to ensure that malicious apps cannot reach your phone. The real problems come from manually sideloading apps on the device that come from sources that you cannot trust. Pirated copies are a well-known example. These applications often contain malicious code. If you use them, you can also give your phone to a hacker with their passcode.
Sideloading isn’t bad by nature. There are plenty of reliable apps that you can install this way. However, it would be best if you were 100% sure where they are from. You cannot download apps or use other app stores on Apple devices without jailbreaking your device.
Manage app permissions.
Check the apps on your phone to see if they have more permissions than required. You can grant or deny permissions such as access to your camera, microphone, contacts, or your location. Keep an eye out for permissions on apps and revoke unnecessary permissions.
For iPhones, go to Settings> Privacy. There you will find a list of all the apps and permissions you’ve given them. The exact location of the app permissions on an Android device depends on the device. On a Google Pixel, however, you can find it under Settings> Apps & Notifications> Advanced> Permissions Manager, or on a Samsung Galaxy, Look in Settings> App> Application permissions (via the three vertical dots in the top right).
Check the permissions of your apps in the settings.
Yes, it can be surprising that your computer asks for cellular data and geolocation. Even if it hasn’t been hacked or spied on you, it can display annoying ads. Go to your phone’s settings and check the permissions you’ve given your apps. Make sure you give them ONLY the features they need. This is how it works while using your iPhone:
- While on your mobile phone (iPhone), go to Settings> Privacy.
- Select the feature you want to change access to and tap it.
- Slide the switch to enable/disable access to a specific app.
- Check all features to prevent apps from compromising your privacy.
Your phone and apps need to stay up-to-date.
If your phone tells you this is an important update, install it! Small security updates for iOS and Android phones are common nowadays. These are usually patches used to fix newly discovered exploits. So, expect many hackers to take the risk and hope to find unpatched phones in the wild.
It’s not that important, but it’s also a good idea to keep your apps updated. Especially if security issues are listed in the update description, poorly written apps can sometimes open a door on the phone, depending on the type of exploit. It’s quite rare but not too excessive that you need to postpone app updates indefinitely.
Use two-factor authentication
Here’s another nasty security measure that most people can’t stand. Two-factor authentication (2FA) is often neglected because it requires all users an extra step. It is excruciating when you forget to have your phone or watch close by. But just like passwords, it does a purpose in providing an extra layer of protection if someone gains access to your password.
Using a Biometric Kill Switch
If you have biometric locks on your smart device, there’s a quick way to turn it off. Learn how to do this on iOS in our article about Face ID and Touch ID. On modern iOS devices, press and hold the power button and all volume buttons to turn off biometrics. If you have something from iPhone 5s to iPhone12, you can turn off biometrics by pressing the on/off button five times.
Before you actually use it, you know the kill switch off your iOS device. If you’ve activated Hey Siri, you can also disable biometrics by saying, Hey Siri, who’s the phone is that? Speak these methods only take until the next time the device is closed.
On Android Pie and later, open your phone settings and search for “Lock Screen Settings” or “Lock Screen Settings.” The exact wording of the menu may vary depending on the brand of the phone. A setting called “Show Lock Options” can be found.
When this option is enabled, press the power button on the lock screen to display the lock mode button. If you select this option, the biometric data will no longer work immediately. A password is required to open your phone.
Use a VPN
If you need to use a public Wi-Fi network, it is imperative to use a virtual private network (VPN) application to encrypt all data transmitted over your network connection. It is advisable to make use of only a credible paid service. It’ll cost a few dollars a month, but it’s worth it.
Beware of spam and phishing emails.
One of the easiest ways hackers can break into your phone and gain access to your information is through your inbox. Phishing scams are designed to trick you into granting access to your accounts. Avoid clicking links in promotional emails, opening suspicious attachments, or performing app updates requested by email. Don’t try to access financial accounts through random emails; go straight to the financial institution’s website, and log in with a correct username and password.
Avoid public Wi-Fi
Public Wi-Fi networks are the perfect hunting ground for hackers looking to earn a simple salary. Because? Whenever you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network with other users you don’t know; your devices can see the other side’s network traffic.
This means that other users with a Wi-Fi password can read any unencrypted data sent by your phone. This also means that the phone can be attacked directly via its local network address. If the public wireless network provider has not properly configured network security, it could be vulnerable. The best way to block hackers from your phone is to avoid these networks completely.
Now that we know how to block hackers from our cell phones, we need to discuss a few ways to tell if your phone has been hacked.
How to know if my phone is hacked?
Here are the most common symptoms that will inform you that your phone has been hacked. Individually, they can be annoying, but if your phone shows more than one, you may find that your phone is infected with a virus or has been the target of a hack.
Is your phone slowing down, heating up, or draining the battery for no reason.
Here are several reasons your phone might slow down, heat up, or use power. If you haven’t made any operating system updates recently and aren’t running any resource-intensive apps, then you should be concerned. This can show you that there is malware running in the background. Hackers may use your phone to search for cryptocurrency, which is very resource-intensive.
This is why you should check which apps are running, how much memory they are using, and how much free space is available on your device. If there is no reason for such a defect, it is most likely that hackers may have infected your phone.
Your data usage grows without you doing anything, or your phone bill grows.
An unexpected increase in data usage could mean that your phone has been hacked into data transfer. For example, it can mine cryptocurrency or steal your photos. It can also mean that a hacker is spying on you. Check your app’s data usage and see which app could be blamed for it. If there are anomalies, you may need to get a hacker removed from your phone.
You may also find that your phone bill has gone up, but you can’t remember making that many calls. It would be a sign to check your records for numbers you haven’t called. If you find any, be aware that your phone may have been hacked and used as a proxy by criminals.
Also, watch out for strange background noise and interference when using the phone. This can be a sign of poor reception. However, it can also indicate that your call is being tapped and that someone is spying on you while listening to your calls.
Purchases you haven’t made will appear on your credit card.
It could indicate another form of credit card fraud, but having a hacked phone is one way a thief can bypass fraud protection. It’s also worth checking your phone if your bank tells you that they have blocked a suspicious transaction.
You notice a new application that you have not installed and/or the antivirus software has been uninstalled.
The first means that someone – a hacker, an abusive spouse, or someone else – has installed spyware on your phone. The latter can be the action of a virus protecting itself – sometimes malware uninstalls antivirus software. If you haven’t done it yourself, this is one of the signs that your phone has been hacked.
Your phone’s settings are mysteriously changing.
If your phone was physically accessed, the perpetrator might have manually changed the settings. For example, if you find that Bluetooth is turned on when you’re not using it, it could be a sign that malware is using it to infect other devices or transmit data.
If you take impactful steps towards protecting your mobile phone from hackers and intruders, be sure that you have done everything you can to protect your critical information. This makes it much less likely that thieves will be able to steal your identity, deepen your personal life, suck your money, control your phone, and usually make your life miserable.
Thank you for reading!