AirDroid Parental Control

● See and listen to kid's phone surroundings remotely

● Sync app notifications and show kid's live screen

● Manage app & screen time usage and view activity report

● Track your loved ones in real-time and set geofencing

● Filter inappropriate content and websites such as porn


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How to Find Hidden Spy Apps on Android? [Tested]

Elsa Updated on Jan 3, 2024 Filed to: Parent Control

Your Android smartphone is a highly versatile device, capable of a wide range of tasks. But did you know that it is also a spy instrument on you? That's right - there are now a number of hidden tracking and spy apps available for Android that can track your location, monitor your texts and calls, and even access your camera.

find hidden spy apps Android

If you're worried that someone might be spying on you, there are a few things you can do to check for hidden spy apps. In this article, we'll show you how to quickly find hidden spy apps on Android so you can keep your data safe and secure.

Signs of Hidden Spy Apps on Android

With over two billion active Android devices, it's no wonder that developers are looking for ways to take advantage of the platform. However, most apps are harmless and helpful. At the same time, some apps intend to spy on users without their consent and knowledge.

Look out for a few signs if you think you might be a victim of hidden spy app activity. In this blog post, we will go over some of the most common signs of hidden spy apps on Android so that you can know what to look for.

1. Strange Phone Behavior

Your Android device may run a hidden spy app if you notice strange behavior, such as errors, application crashes, or excessive heating issues. If you find apps installed on your device that you don't remember installing or can't seem to delete, it could be a sign that they're part of a spying operation.

2. Abnormal Increase in Data Usage

If you've realized that your data usage has spiked recently, it may indicate that you have a secret spy app on your Android device. Such apps are designed to collect information without the user's knowledge or consent and can use a lot of data. It is also possible to confirm the presence of a spy app by checking if the device is unusually heating. If so, take immediate action.

3. Unusual Battery Drain

An unusual battery drain is one of the most common signs that your Android device has a hidden tracking app installed. If you notice that your battery is draining faster than usual, it could be because a string operation is running in the background and using up your battery power.

If you see an app, you don't recognize or haven't used recently. It could be a sign that it's a spy app. To check if any apps are using up excessive power on your Android device, check your battery usage statistics.

4. Unusual Phone Call Noises

There are several telltale signs that someone is tracking your phone. One of the most common is unusual phone call noises. If you hear clicking, pop-ups, or strange echoing during calls, it's possible that your calls are being recorded without your knowledge.

The sound of strange noises coming from your phone could indicate the presence of a hidden spy app. Since these apps are intended to be undetectable, you should take action immediately if you suspect you have one.

5. Suspicious Text Messages and Files

If you're getting strange text messages or files from an unknown source, your phone may have been infected with a malware attack. As the name implies, these apps stealthily collect information from your device and can be very difficult to detect.

6. Random Reboots and Shut Downs

If your Android phone is suddenly shutting down or restarting on its own, you may have a malicious app operating on the device. Apps like these run in the background without your knowledge and can pose serious security risks.

If your phone is frequently or randomly shutting down or restarting, look closely at what's running in the background. If you see an app you don't recall installing or can't seem to uninstall. It's likely a hidden spy app.

7. Abnormal Sounds When Your Phone Isn't in Use

If your phone isn't in use but still hearing strange sounds, it is another typical indication that there's an anonymous tracking app on your Android device. The most common effects of spy apps are strange noises and abnormal behavior since they run in the background without your knowledge.

Also: How to Know If Someone Is Tracking Your Phone

How to Find Hidden Spy Apps on Android?

Each day thousands of harmful applications are removed from the Google play store. Still, plenty of third-party apps could attempt to spy on you or steal your confidential information. The moment you suspect an unusual behavior on your Android device, do not hesitate to check if there is any malicious app and uninstall it immediately.

1Use the Settings App

First and foremost, check the default settings application on your Android device.

Step 1: Open the Android Settings app and go to the Apps section.

tap on apps

Step 2: You can see a list of all the apps installed on your device, both system apps and third-party apps.

Step 3: Look through the list and see if there are any apps you don't remember installing or don't recognize.

check unknown apps

If you find anything suspicious, uninstall it right away. You can also check online to see if there are any reports of spyware associated with the App in question. And the AirDroid Parental Control app has an App List feature, similar to Setting. You can see all the apps and details on the paired phone. At the same time, you can also set time limits for apps.

2By App Drawer

The latest Android smartphone offers a more organized app drawer. If you take a closer look to see all the suspicious applications, you can find the application from there. All you need to do is press and hold that App, and from the pop-up, click on Uninstall to get rid of it.

Step 1: Head over to the App Drawer section.

Step 2: Or hold on free space on the screen and go to Settings.

hold on free space

Step 3: You will see a Hide apps menu. Click on it. It will show you all hidden apps.

go to hide apps

3Use Android File Manager

There is an easy way to check if all malicious folders for the spy app have been removed from your Android device. Open your Android File Manager and look for suspicious files or folders. If you find anything that you don't identify, it's possibly a spy app. You can then uninstall the App as well as the APK folders and get rid of it for good. Finding and uninstalling a spy app is a straightforward process, you can also turn off the Install unknown apps switch directly .

turn off install unknown apps button

4Check App Permissions

It is vital to check which apps are allowed to access your Android device. In many cases, users ignore it and allow unnecessary permissions to spy apps which could lead to problems.

Step 1: Head over to the Settings. Scroll down and click on Apps.

Step 2: Tap on Permission manager.

tap on permission manager

Step 3: From the list of apps, find and click on any spy app or a third-party app that seems strange.

Step 4: Click on the permission setting at the bottom and slide the toggle to the left side or turn off all permissions.

5Check Unknown Apps

Spying attempts are most likely caused by an unknown application roaming your device. Finding and uninstalling a spy app is an essential and pretty straightforward process. Still, it's always a good idea to be on the lookout for any suspicious application on your device. After all, you never know when a spy app might try to sneak into your device.

If you're worried that someone has installed a hidden spy app on your Android device, You can use AirDroid Parental Control to check. Open it and tap on App List section, you will see all apps. And you can look for anything that seems out of the ordinary. If you see any apps you don't remember installing or any settings have been changed without your knowledge, this could be a signal that your phone has been compromised.

AirDroid app list

If you're still concerned that there may be a hidden spy app on your Android phone, the best thing to do is to perform a factory reset. This will erase all of the data on your device, including any.

6Check Unusual Location Symbol

When you come across a spy app on your phone, you might notice an app tracking or accessing location services without your permission. However, some spy apps are designed to be perfectly camouflaged, and they will not show any notifications or icons.

One way to check for these apps is to look for an unusual location symbol on your device. If you see a symbol that you don't recognize, it is probably a sign that someone is tracking your location. You can also check for this symbol in the app drawer or in the settings menu. If you see it anywhere, it's a good indication that there is a spy app on your device.

How to Remove Hidden Spy Apps on Android?

When you find a problematic application, you should figure out how to permanently remove it. Spy apps can track your every move, monitor your messages, and even record your phone calls. If you think you are a victim of such surveillance, here's how to remove hidden spy apps from your Android device.

1Boot Your Android Device into Safe Mode

If your device may have a hidden spy app installed on it, you can boot it into safe mode to check. Safe mode is a diagnostic startup mode in Android that allows you to access your phone without running any third-party apps. You can check if any spy apps are on your device and disable them instantly.

To boot into safe mode,

  1. Step 1.First, turn off your Android device.
  2. Step 2.Press and hold the power button until you see the Android logo.
  3. Once the logo appears, let go of the power button and immediately press and hold the volume down key. Keep pressing the volume down key until the "Safe mode" message appears at the screen's bottom. At this point, you can let go of the volume down key, and your device will boot into safe mode.

    Once your device is in safe mode, look around and see if any suspicious apps are installed. In safe mode, the spy application won't interfere with your device's operation.

  4. Step 3.Restart the device to exit safe mode.
  5. Samsung safe mode

  6. Step 4.Check and uninstall all unnecessary and malicious applications.

2Enable Google Play Protect

It is hard to imagine a better security tool than the default Google security feature, "Google Play Protect." That identifies malicious apps you install and those you already have on your device to determine if they are harmful.

In most cases, Google Play Protect is automatically enabled on Android devices users can also enable or scan the apps with Google Play. The service will scan all apps installed on the device to identify and remove any harmful apps.

To enable Google Play Protect:

  1. Step 1.Open the Google Play Store app.
  2. Step 2.Tap on your profile Avatar in the top left corner.
  3. Step 3.Scroll down and tap Play Protect.
  4. tap on play protect

  5. Step 4.Once Play protect is launched, click on Scan to scan your device for security threats and improve harmful app detection.
  6. click on scan button

  7. Step 5.Hit the settings icon at the top of the screen and enable Scan apps with Play Protect.
  8. enable scan with play protect

How to Uninstall Hidden Spy Phone App on Android?

If you observe any suspicious activity coming from a third-party application, uninstall it immediately. Two effective methods exist to uninstall hidden spy phone apps on Android through device settings.

1. Uninstall Manually

Step 1: Open Android device settings.

Step 2: Scroll down and click on the Apps.

Step 3: Check if you installed any applications that you didn't remember installing.

Step 4: Select the application and click on Uninstall.

click on uninstall

2. Factory Data Reset

Finding spy app files is often difficult since they are hidden or disguised, so users can't figure out what is happening. As a result, factory data reset is the only option left to completely remove the spy app.

Step 1: Open Android device settings.

Step 2: Scroll down till you see About phone and click on Reset.

tap on reset

Step 3: Tap on Factory data reset and enter the password to reset the device.

click on factory data reset

Note : Before performing a factory reset, keep a copy of all your files, pictures, and important data.

How to Disable Hidden Spy Apps on Android?

If you have tried everything and suspect the spy activity is still there, the AirDroid Parental Control application is the most effective way to find and disable any hidden spy apps on Android. It automatically analyzes any spyware app and reports it to the user for removal. The application has been verified by Google Play Protect and can be downloaded easily from the Play Store.

AirDroid Parental Control logo

AirDroid Parental Control remains active and monitors Android device activities continuously, so you won't have to worry about minor glitches or errors that could be construed as spying attempts. As children's devices are a big concern for many parents, It can prevent any app from tracking locations or accessing conversations. Parents can monitor and disable all spyware applications from their children's devices. Likewise, tracking smartphone usage and setting restrictions for certain applications is possible.

So if you're worried about hidden spy apps, be sure to download it today. It's the best way to protect yourself from being spied on. Here's how you can set up AirDroid Parental Control on your device:

Step 1. Download the AirDroid Parental Control App from the Google Play Store or App Store and create an account. Once you're logged in, you'll be able to access all of the App's features, including the ability to disable all hidden apps.

Step 2. Launch AirDroid Parental Control on your smartphone. You will be directed to the sign-up page. Create an account and log in.

Step 3. If you want to disable hidden apps, you can download AirDroid Kids on their phone. After installation, launch AirDroid Kids and enter the pairing code to bind the device. You will then need to configure some necessary settings. It is now possible to detect and remove any suspicious application.

disable spy apps

What Is Spy Apps?

Spy apps are software programs that allow users to secretly track someone's activity on their phone or another device. They can be used for various purposes, including catching a cheating boyfriend, tracking a child's online activity, or monitoring employee productivity. Such apps can be installed on a person's phone without their knowledge and can be very difficult to detect.

Most spy apps work by tracking the GPS location of the phone or device they're installed on. This allows you to see where the person is at all times and even view their real-time location on a map. Some spy apps can track text messages, call logs, and social media activity.

Commercial Spyware

Commercial spyware is malicious software or App designed to gather information about a person or organization without their consent. This information is often used for competitive intelligence, tracking employee activities, or market research.

Sadly, most spy apps, such as Pegasus, Rootkit, Trojan, and Dark Caracal Pallas, are accessed and misused by cybercriminals for harming or stealing users' personal information. Commercial spyware is legal in most countries, but it is vital to use it ethically and responsibly.

Abuse of Legitimate Apps

The Android operating system is home to some of the most harmful and so-called legitimate apps that aren't legit. Even the Google Play store is filled with numerous fake and malicious apps that solely intend to steal and sell your data.

The Google analysis of malware shows that attackers are resorting to stolen credentials and impersonating trusted applications to socially engineer victims. Such clones and fake apps are serious threats to users as well as damaging to a brand's hard-earned reputation.

ZeroDay Spyware

"ZeroDay" is a term used to describe recently detected security threats in systems that hackers can exploit. ZeroDay spyware intends to infect computers and steal data using vulnerabilities in software. Such Spywares are particularly dangerous because they are often used to target specific individuals or organizations.

ZeroDay spyware attacks have disrupted the security of even the most secure operating systems, iOS to Android, and even Microsoft apps. It is important to ensure you use the official app and not the cracked version. Keep your device updated as well.

Be Aware of Android Spy App File Names

  • XNSPY
  • FlexiSPY
  • SpyBubble
  • Hoverwatch
  • Eyezy
  • mSpy
  • Umobix

FAQs about Finding Hidden Spy Apps on Android

1. How Can I See Disguised Apps on Android?
Elsa
Elsa

To see disguised apps on Android, Head over to the app drawer and click on the three dots menu at the screen's upper-right. Now select the home screen settings. Here you can see all Hidden apps.

2. How to Find Hidden Apps on Motorola Android?
Elsa
Elsa

When you swipe up or tap the app drawer icon at the bottom of your phone's home screen, you get a scrollable display of all your apps. From here, you can hide or unhide applications on your Motorola device through the menu option.

3. How to Find Spy apps on My Phone?
Elsa
Elsa

If you are looking for hidden spy applications on your Android device, check the Android file manager and delete any suspicious folders. Also, Check for unknown applications you have granted permission to and simply remove them.

4. How to Find Hidden Tracking Apps on Android?
Elsa
Elsa

If you are looking for hidden tracking apps on Android, navigate to settings, scroll down and click on applications and see if there is anything you didn't install.

5. How to Find Hidden Apps on OnePlus?
Elsa
Elsa

Launch the app drawer and navigate to your hidden space app drawer. There is a + sign click on it to see the list of applications. Select all the applications you wish to hide from the app drawer and press done.

6. How Do I Find Unwanted Hidden Apps on Android?
Elsa
Elsa

The settings menu on Android devices can be used to find hidden apps quickly. Go to Settings, click Manage apps, and select all. You will see a list of all applications, even if they are set to hidden.

7. How to Prevent Your Android Phone from Getting Spyware?
Elsa
Elsa

To protect your Android device from spyware, you should never install apps from anywhere other than the Google Play Store. Moreover, Download AirDroid parental control if you suspect there is any suspicious application you can't discover. This App will detect and delete spy applications immediately.

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Elsa
Elsa
Elsa has worked on a number of iOS & Android solutions, she can always find her way around almost any application. She is an accomplished, skilled and versatile writer with more than 7 years of technical article writing experience.
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