How do I know if my phone has been hacked?
Can’t your phone hold a charge? Inundated with pop-up ads? These are just some of the signs that your phone may be compromised.
CHARLOTTE, NC — Cell phones are no longer just portable phones; They are handheld computers that most people use to run just about every aspect of their personal lives. But that makes them a target for cybercriminals.
In fact, there is a chance that a person’s phone could be compromised right now and they wouldn’t know it.
What most would write off as technical errors could be a signal of something more sinister. Senior manager of security solutions at Lookout Hank Schless said there are five key signs that a person’s phone may have been hacked.
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If a phone is hot to the touch, it’s possible that cybercriminals are transferring data from a person’s device to a remote server. Transferring data causes a phone to work non-stop, heating up in the process.
Random apps appear out of nowhere
If hackers have control over a phone, they can install apps remotely to monitor and track activity. Lookout advises people to check and remove any suspicious or unknown apps.
Poor battery performance
Unwanted apps can quickly drain your phone’s battery.
Malware can slow down your phone’s processor and cause dropped calls, undelivered texts, screen freezes and crashes.
Constant pop-up ads, home screen updates and bookmarks to unknown websites are signs of malicious adware.
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For those who believe their phone has been hacked, there are many apps designed to help track down the culprit. Experts advise people to check their bank and credit card statements for signs of fraudulent activity so you can report the breach right away.
Tips to avoid being exposed to fraud
- Emotional appeal – Any pitch that heightens your emotions will inhibit your rational judgment.
- Feeling of urgency – You MUST act now, or else.
- Request for unorthodox payment – Gift cards, prepaid credit cards, bank transfers, etc.
- Explanations that do not add up – If your new “landlord” can’t show you the inside of the house, it may be because they don’t own it.
- You won, pay nowpp – It’s not a premium if you have to pay for it. Taxes, duties, shipping, whatever.
- Too good to be true – That’s because it’s not true. Sorry, your long lost relative didn’t die and leave you millions. That car you bought online for a third of that Kelly Blue Book value doesn’t really exist. The son of a billionaire diamond broker “swiped right” on you and instantly fell in love. That home job that pays you hundreds of dollars an hour to stuff envelopes isn’t real.
WCNC Charlotte always asks “where’s the money?” If you need help, please contact WCNC Charlotte by sending an email [email protected].