Tech

How to Tell If Your Phone Has a Virus

Tips on what you need to take action

need to know

  • Viruses often show up on your phone with unfamiliar apps, misbehavior, ads, and increased data usage.
  • Affected apps, attachments and websites are usually the culprits.
  • Keeping your phone up to date and paying attention to the apps, messages, and websites you open can help prevent viruses.

This article covers the signs that your phone has a virus, types of viruses, and tips for preventing infections.

Towfiqu Photo / Getty Images

thing to look for

Here are some hints that your phone is infected:

  • There are apps on your phone that you haven’t downloaded. Check your app list to see if there are any apps you don’t recognize.
  • Your phone crashes regularly. If this happens once and there are no other symptoms, the problem may not be a virus. But if it starts to happen frequently, the cause is probably a virus.
  • Your battery will drain much faster than normal. If you’re using your phone as you normally would but your battery is draining faster, this is another possible sign.
  • You are getting more pop-up ads than usual. A virus can make pop-up ads even more common and annoying.
  • Without logical explanation, data usage increases. If your cell phone bill shows much more data usage than usual and you are using your phone normally, it’s probably caused by a virus.
  • Additional text messaging charges apply to your account. Some malware sends text messages to premium numbers, increasing your rates.

How did my phone get infected?

The most common ways phones get infected with viruses and other problems are through apps, email attachments, text messages, and even malicious websites.

What types of viruses infect phones?

As a result, it doesn’t matter what type of virus your phone might have, no matter what type of virus you have to deal with. However, it is likely to be one of those listed here. In addition to limiting the functionality of your phone, viruses can cause more serious harm to your life by deleting data, collecting private information or making (or trying to make) unauthorized purchases.

  • adware: Generates ads that link to web pages or apps that may cause harm or security breaches
  • malware: Take over certain phone functions to steal personal information, send text messages or perform other problematic operations
  • ransomware: Locks files or apps and charges the user for unlocking them
  • spyware: monitor user phone activity for malicious purposes
  • Trojan horse: Added to a valid application and interferes with phone operation.

How can I prevent phone viruses?

There is a lot you can do to prevent your phone from getting a virus.

  • keep up to date. Download and install a reputable antivirus app for your phone. Also, always accept OS updates. Download and use these apps before you think you need them. Apart from detecting viruses, they can protect your phone against them.
  • Use only approved apps. Make sure you only download approved apps from Google Play for Android devices and App Store for iOS devices. Read reviews and check the developer’s website to make sure you’re getting a quality app.
  • Be knowledgeable about your inbox. Use the same email hygiene you use when viewing messages on your computer. Be wary of attachments and only open those from trusted sources. Take the same care with links embedded in a message. Finally, watch out for messages that appear to come from companies you do business with.
  • Beware of phishing scams. Many scammers send fake emails that appear to come from legitimate companies. Emails often have clear signs of slightly incorrect email addresses, poor grammar, and requests to “update your credit card information” or other phishing scams.
  • Watch the texts. Maintain the same level of skepticism towards text messages and social media as well as advertisements.
  • Trust your gut. If something feels “weird” about any activity you do on your phone, take a step back and ask yourself if it’s worth continuing to lose your phone’s functionality or some data it contains.

A Word About Viruses on iOS

“iPhones can’t get viruses!” not entirely correct. Any iOS device is a computer and any computer. I can catching virus.

However, if you haven’t jailbroken your iOS device, your chances of getting a virus are low. If you search the App Store, you won’t find any apps titled Anti-Virus (except maybe a game or two). Apple’s iOS is designed in such a way that App A does not affect the space App B is running. This applies to the entire operating system; therefore, an app cannot scan your iOS device for viruses because apps cannot reach all areas.

However, it is possible to download an application from the App Store that does more than it promises. Pay attention to the privileges of any application request. For example, most games don’t need to access your photos, camera or microphone.

What Is a Computer Virus Really?

An encrypting virus that replicates itself after infecting the device and then either destroys the data or tries to send itself to another device. smart phones I can you get viruses, but these are rarer than other problems.


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How to Tell If Your Phone Has a Virus

Hints to that you need to take action

What to Know
Viruses usually manifest themselves on your phone with apps you don’t recognize, glitchy behavior, ads, and increased data usage.
Apps, attachments, and infected websites are usually to blame.
Keeping your phone up to date and being careful about the apps, messages, and websites you open can help you avoid viruses.

This article discusses signs that your phone has a virus, types of viruses, and tips for preventing infection.

Towfiqu Photography / Getty Images What to Look For

Here are a few clues that your phone has been infected by a virus:

You have apps on your phone that you didn’t download. Check your app list to see if there are any there that you don’t recognize.
Your phone crashes regularly. If it happens once and there are no other symptoms, a virus may not be the issue. But if it starts happening frequently, a virus is likely the cause. 
Your battery drains much faster than usual. If you’re using your phone as you normally do, but you run out of juice more quickly, that’s another likely sign.
You get more pop-up ads than usual. A virus can cause pop-up ads to become even more common and annoying.
Data usage increases with no logical explanation. If your mobile bill shows much more data use than usual, and you’re using your phone as you normally do, a virus is likely the reason.
You get additional texting charges on your bill. Some malware sends text messages to premium numbers, driving up your charges.
How Did My Phone Get a Virus?

The most common way phones get viruses and other issues is through apps, attachments via email, text messages, and even nefarious web sites.

What Kinds of Viruses Do Phones Get?

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter what kind of virus your phone may have, since, no matter the type, it will need to be addressed. But, it’s likely one of those listed here. In addition to limiting your phone’s functionality, viruses can cause more serious damage in your life by deleting data, gathering private information, or making (or attempting to make) unauthorized purchases.

Adware: Creates ads with links to web pages or apps that can cause damage or security breaches
Malware: Takes over certain phone functions to steal personal information, send text messages, or perform other problematic actions
Ransomware: Locks files or apps, then demands money from the user in exchange for unlocking them
Spyware: Monitors the user’s phone activity for malicious purposes
Trojan Horse: Attaches itself to a legitimate app, then interferes with the phone’s operation.
How Can I Prevent Phone Viruses?

There’s a lot you can do to prevent your phone from getting a virus.

Stay up to date. Download and install a reputable antivirus app for your phone. Additionally, always agree to operating system updates. Download and use these apps before you think you need them. In addition to detecting viruses, they can protect your phone from getting them in the first place.
Use approved apps only. Be sure to only download approved apps from Google Play for Android devices and the App Store for iOS devices. To make sure you’re getting a quality app, read the reviews, and check out the developer’s website. 
Be inbox-savvy. Use the same email hygiene you employ when looking at messages on your computer. Be wary of attachments, and only open those from trusted sources. Use the same level of caution with links embedded in a message. Finally, be wary of messages that look like they’re from companies you do business with.
Beware of phishing schemes. Many scammers send fake emails that look like they’re from legitimate companies. The emails often feature the telltale signs of slightly-off email addresses, poor grammar, and requests for you to “update your credit card information” or other phishing scams.
Monitor texts. Maintain the same level of skepticism regarding text and social media messages, as well as ads.
Trust your gut. If something seems “off” about any activity you’re doing on your phone, take a step back and ask yourself if proceeding is worth losing your phone’s functionality or some of the data it holds. 
A Word About Viruses on iOS

The claim “iPhones can’t get viruses!” isn’t exactly true. Any iOS device is a computer and any computer can get a virus.

However, if you haven’t jailbroken your iOS device, the chances you have a virus are low. If you search the App Store, you won’t find any apps with the title Anti-Virus (other than maybe a game or two). Apple’s iOS is designed such that App A can’t interfere with the space where App B is working. That goes for the entire operating system, so an app can’t search your iOS device for viruses because apps can’t reach every space.

However, it is possible to download an app from the App Store that does more than it claims. Pay attention to the privileges any app requests. For example, most games don’t need access to your photos, camera, or microphone.

What a Computer Virus Actually Is

A virus when coding that self-duplicates after the device gets infected and then destroys data or tries to send itself to another device. Smartphones can get viruses, but they are rarer than other issues.

#Phone #Virus


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