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How to Detect iPhone Spy Software

Updated April 17, 2017

The iPhone has such a good reputation for maintaining security against malicious software that the Apple App Store makes no virus or malware removal tools available. Yet, not all apps are safe to use. Spyware is software that collects personal data from a device without a user's consent. Although you currently have no way to use an app to scan for spyware, you have a few basic detection methods to determine if your phone is at risk. If you suspect a recently installed app of being spyware, uninstall it immediately.

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  1. Charge your iPhone fully, and leave it inactive for a few hours. If the battery life drops significantly, spyware may be active on your device. Programs running in the background require power. If your battery is draining faster than it should, this can be an indicator of spyware.

  2. Monitor your phone bill. If spyware is sending information from your phone, this will reflect as an increase in data transfer on your monthly bill.

  3. Watch for the GRPS/3G icon. This icon routinely appears when you connect to the Internet. Seeing this icon appear when you are not using your iPhone to go online shows that some other program, such as active spyware, may be accessing the Internet.

  4. Shut down your iPhone. If your device is slow to shut down or does not shut down at all, this could indicate that you have active spyware. This is similar to shutting down a personal computer when you have other programs open.

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About the Author

Marie Cartwright began writing in 2010. Her work has appeared on various websites. Having held office jobs in copywriting and editing, Cartwright now works from her home in Northern California. She also maintains an events website geared toward the science and technology community.

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