How to detect “spies” in smartphones? 3 tips from expert

November 28, 2023  19:11

Information security expert from the League of Digital Economy, Vitaly Fomin, shared three tips on how to detect spyware on a smartphone:

  1. Using Antivirus: The first and main step, according to Fomin, is to install an antivirus program on your smartphone. The antivirus is capable of detecting many malicious files and programs, which makes it an important tool in the fight against spyware.
  2. Device Behavior Analysis: The second method is to analyze changes in device behavior. If your smartphone suddenly discharges faster than usual, Internet traffic consumption increases, geolocation is randomly turned on, SMS messages are sent to unknown numbers and other suspicious events occur, then this may be a sign of the presence of spyware.
  3. Using an Application Scanner: The third method involves installing an application scanner that can constantly monitor for suspicious access attempts and notify the device owner about them.

These methods can help users identify spyware on their mobile devices, providing an additional layer of security. It is important to note that regular software updates and careful installation of applications also play a key role in preventing information security threats.

It should be noted, however, that there are also spyware programs that are almost impossible to detect on your smartphone - at least such methods are not available to ordinary users. Such programs include, for example, Pegasus. Using this program, you can “steal” almost any information, since the “customer” gets full access to the victim’s phone. At the same time, a phone infected with Pegasus does not overheat, does not freeze, and does not experience any other “symptoms” of infection. Moreover, the victim does not need to click on viral links or do anything at all for the program to sneak into the phone.

But since this program is very expensive and available only to a few, governments of different countries usually buy it to spy on certain citizens - their own or others. Azerbaijan, for example, uses Pegasus to spy on its own citizens and as a cyber weapon against Armenia.

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