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How To Tell If Your Cell Phone Is Bugged

Detecting Cell Phone Spy Software

There are a  few obvious signs that your cell phone is being monitored/tapped.  (Bear in mind that some of these indicators can be caused by other factors so you need to use your judgment.)  Some spy software works extremely well and in stealth mode for which you will need expert advice, but in general, below are indications that your phone may be tapped:

Odd Phone Behavior –  Make note of  odd changes in your cell phones behavior. Does it suddenly light up when not in use; make random beeping noises, shutdown by itself or exhibit any other random behavior? All phones can do strange things from time to time but if this is happening on a regular basis it could be a sign that your phone is being accessed by hidden software.

Battery Rundown – Some spyware apps can be a drain on your battery so look out for any sudden changes in your battery life such as it needs charging more often.   Be aware that over time your cell phone battery life will diminish naturally, so you’re looking for any dramatic change. Some of the cheaper spy software programs will run your battery down quickly, however the more modern programs are designed to make less demand on the battery and are harder to identify.

Phone Shuts down –  Has your phone begun to regularly shut down by itself, even when the battery is charged? Some spyware can be buggy so be on the lookout for this weird behavior.

Background Noise –  Background noise can just be a bad connection but f it is happening more than normal, it could be another tell-tale sign. Look out for static, clicking, beeping or voices in the background.

Receiving Unusual Texts – Don’t dismiss strange text messages containing random numbers, symbols or characters? The remote control feature of spyware works by sending secret coded text messages to your phone and in some cases these can be seen – if the spyware is not working correctly. If this happens regularly you could have a spy app on your phone.

Increased data Usage – Noticed an increase in your normal data usage? Some of the less stable spy apps use extra data to send the information collected from your phone, so be on the lookout for any unexplained surge in your monthly data usage. There are several apps that can be used to monitor your data usage check out: My Data Manager – Android from Goggle Play,  and Data Usage – for iPhone, available from the Apple Store. Again, with the best spy software programs data usage has been reduced and will be almost impossible to spot – but the poor programs will show significant data use.

With all of the above indicators you are looking for sudden, unexplained changes in your phone’s behavior. Each abnormal behavior on its own is not necessarily evidence of spyware on your phone but if several of these weird actions occur, you could very well be a victim of spyware.

If you suspect spyware on your cell phone, visit this site and select the best spyware removal app for your purposes:

2018’s Top Ten Spyware Removal Apps

BNI Operatives: Situationally aware.

As always, stay safe.

Top 5 Spy Tools for Fall 2016, Including an Unshredder!

unshredder

1. Unshredder

Just because you’ve spent an hour shredding important documents doesn’t mean that those shredded pieces of paper can’t be put back together again. Unshredder, dubbed the first commercial document reconstruction tool in the world, is a computer program capable of reconstructing documents that have been strip-shred and cross-shred, and documents with torn pages. Instead of aligning each little shredded piece by hand, this Windows-based application automates the reassembly of documents through four simple steps: collate, segmentation, reconstruction, and report. The finished results can then be printed, e-mailed, or copied. Used by government agencies, police departments, lawyers, private investigators, and security agents, Unshredder is available with a monthly license for $90 or a yearly license starting at $950.

2. Motokata Bionic Ear Hearing Amplifier

Wish you could hear the conversation between your boss and the CEO? The Motokata Bionic Ear-Hearing Amplifier uses sound-magnification technology that lets you hear any conversation clearly and distinctly up to 20 feet away. Weighing around an ounce, it amplifies sounds up to 50 decibels and can be easily attached to your shirt pocket or belt. Attach the amplifier to the included stereo earphones to hear spoken words and control the volume. Approx. $49.95.

3. Jakks Pacific EyeClops Night Vision

For the nocturnal spy, Jakks Pacific’s EyeClops Night Vision goggles ($79.99) will let you see objects in total darkness. Gearlog’s Brian Bennett tested the device in a dark room, and he was able to see people and objects pretty clearly. A knob on the right side activates an LED light, letting you see further into the dark. If the green-colored night vision starts giving you a headache, there’s even a switch on the bottom of the right eye piece that toggles your view from green to black and white.
4. Computer Mouse Transmitter
Be careful what you say around this computer mouse. The Computer Mouse Transmitterhouses an ultra-mini microphone and transmitter circuit, which can pick up sounds from up to approximately 32 feet away. For the rich spy, this sneaky mouse sells for upwards of $1,200.o0.
5. Vehicle Safeguard Video Recording Camera
How many times have you been driving on the road, only to witness someone running a red light or pulling right out in front of you? Catch bad drivers red-handed with the Vehicle Safeguard Video Recording Camera ($49.95). Attach the cradle to your vehicle’s dashboard and place the recording unit inside the cradle. Set the recording angle in any direction you’d like, and insert an SD card up to 2GB of capacity to store the recordings. The camera measures 18.25 by 6.12 by 2.25 inches, weighs one pound, and operates on four AAA batteries.
Well, summer is almost over so it’s time to get serious about our spy tools again! (Just make sure you are familira with local governing laws and then, have at it!
BNI Operatives: Situationally aware.
As always, stay safe.

How To Tell If You Are Being Tracked Via Cell Phone.

spying

Have an unshakable feeling that someone is tracking your whereabouts and conversations via your cell phone? Given the ease of use and access to spyware tools these days, coupled with your involvement in a hostile situation (divorce, child custody or partnership split), you just might be right.  Know what to look for and what to do.

Access is key

Since installing tracking apps and spyware requires physical access to your phone, the easiest way to prevent these mobile intrusions is to keep your phone secure. Obviously, though, you can’t take your phone everywhere – you have to shower sometime – make sure you set a PIN to your phone – and make it a difficult one (no birthdays, addresses, anniversaries, etc.).

Has your iPhone been “jailbroken”?

In order to install tracking or spyware to your iPhone, a process called “jailbreaking” is required to bypass Apple’s strict security.  The person tracking you may have been in a rush and they might not have deleted jailbreaking apps, the most commonly used are: Cydia, Icy, Installer, Installous and SBSettings.  Simply swipe right on your home screen to search your phone, as they won’t necessarily show up with an app icon.

Check your bills

If there’s a tracking app or spyware on your phone, it will more than likely contain a GPS aspect to it which would send your data usage through the roof.   Check your bill for a spike in this usage.

Signs you may have tracking apps or spyware installed

There are tell-tale signs that your phone might be tracking you without your knowledge, such as:

  • Does the battery run down a lot quicker than it should, and stay warm even when idle?
  • Does it stay lit when you try to turn the screen off, or light up when you’re not doing anything?
  • Is it slower running apps than normal?
  • Are there unfamiliar applications running in the background?
  • Does it take forever to shut down?

Don’t ignore odd messages

If you receive a text message full of what looks like computer code, or garbled numbers, it is possible it’s an ‘instruction’ message sent by the remote controller of the tracking software on your phone; the spyware works by receiving such messages and although they are meant to go unnoticed, may sometimes appear in your inbox.

How to remove tracking apps and spyware

Keep your phone’s software up to date, use anti-malware software and delete anything suspicious. But the only sure way is to do a full backup to your computer, reset your phone to factory settings and then reinstall everything one by one, making sure to only reinstall apps you know and trust.

If you’re using an iPhone that you suspect has been jailbroken, upgrade to the latest version of iOS as this will reverse the jailbreak and remove the malignant software – just make sure you’re backed up first.

Finally, run one of the below top five (as determined by Lifehacker) malware removal products:

  • Spybot Search & Destroy (Windows, Freeware)
  • SUPERAntiSpyware (Windows, $30)
  • ComboFix (Windows, Freeware)
  • Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware (Windows, $25)
  • HijackThis (Windows, Freeware)

(They are found on CNet and, reviewed there as well.)

The bottom line is situational awareness.  If you are in the process of a divorce, business partnership split-up, other litigation, etc.  believe that someone will try to get an inside peek into your life.  Remain vigilant.

BNI Operatives: Situationally aware.

As always, stay safe.

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