Best Cell Phone Spy Apps
How To Find Hidden Spyware On Android Smartphones In 2022 How To Find Hidden Spyware On Android Smartphones In 2022

How To Find Hidden Spyware On Android Smartphones In 2022

AndroidCell Phone SpyHow To Pat Stanley

Are you an Android phone user wondering how to detect and address threats on your device? Are you searching for reliable answers on ‘How... How To Find Hidden Spyware On Android Smartphones In 2022

Are you an Android phone user wondering how to detect and address threats on your device? Are you searching for reliable answers on ‘How to find spy apps on my phone?’ Looking for efficient solutions in isolating and eliminating harmful apps from your Android phone?

Spyware, or spy software, is often classified as malicious software since it’s designed to monitor and track device activities. While such software is initially designed for parents and employers, some users take advantage of hidden spyware on Android for their personal and/or malicious intentions, contributing to spyware’s not-so-good image. So, if you’re searching for ways on how to locate spyware on Android, regardless of your reasons, read on.


Who Would Want To Find Hidden Cell Phone Spy Apps?

Who can monitor your android device?

Monitoring apps typically offer remote installation by only utilizing or having access to the file names of spyware programs on Android. This is probably why hundreds of thousands of phone users, even less tech-savvy ones, are downloading spyware.

Before sharing how to find hidden spyware on Android smartphones in 2022, let’s identify who might benefit from these find spyware on Android solutions.

    1. Teens/Tweens

      Most spy tools are specifically programmed for child monitoring – packed with tracking features, privacy settings, and parental controls. While parents only have the purest intentions for installing such software, teens or tweens might take it differently.

      Though they have varying reasons to find spy apps on Android phones they own, their main concern is their freedom and privacy. Since they’re discovering who they are as a person, they could be sensitive when they believe other people, even their parents, are trying to invade their privacy.

    2. Employees

      Several tracking tools are specifically programmed to drive productivity and ensure quality in workplaces. Employee monitoring is legally allowed in most states if there’s a formal notification to or consent from the employees. Plus, some jurisdictions only allow spyware installation on company-owned devices.

      Nevertheless, employees may feel the urge to make sure their personal devices aren’t being monitored. Of course, employees still have the right to privacy especially during off-work hours and when out-of-office.

    3. Partners/Spouses

      The legality and morality of utilizing a monitoring tool on someone you’re dating or in a relationship with is vague. There’s no denying some spyware users are spouses or partners who wish to ensure they’re not being cheated on.

      Some say only those who have something to hide are eager to look for ways to ensure they’re not being monitored or tracked by their partners or spouses. Regardless, being in a relationship or marriage doesn’t lessen your right to privacy.


Detecting Spyware On An Android Phone: The Signs

Top spy apps for android

What do spy apps look like and how do you remove spyware? The first step on how to find hidden spy apps on Android devices is to smartly identify red flags. Most hidden spyware on Android is designed to stealthily run in the background capturing conversations, browser history searches, and other activities on the target Android phone.

Though these tools are meant to silently extract and upload data, there could be unavoidable effects on the target device. Watch out for these warning signs which could help answer – ‘how to find spy apps on my phone’.

    • Increased Data Use

      Unusually high usage of mobile data could mean a third-party app or hidden spyware on Android is running in the background.

    • Battery Life and Temperature

      Extracting and transferring data could consume a chunk of the target device’s battery power. Watch out for rapid deterioration of the phone’s battery life or an increase in the battery temperature even while in idle mode.

    • Random Activities

      Random activities you don’t initiate or set could mean a person is remotely controlling the device. This may include screen lighting, apps launching, and automatic navigation.

    • Unexpected Reboots

      The phone automatically restarting or rebooting is typically due to system updates that you’re notified of beforehand. Unexpected restarts or reboots, on the other hand, could be signs of unauthorized penetration.

    • Weird Text Messages

      Spyware utilizes complex algorithms to run properly. However, some adverse effects of hidden spyware on Android include sending of alphanumeric codes or random keys via SMS.

    • Background Noise

      Weird noises during phone calls aren’t always due to bad reception. They could result from phone tapping or third-party call recording.

    • Slower Speed

      Multiple apps or a single app running in the background could cause the phone to function slower than normal. Phone latency is a red flag, especially in the latest mobile device models.

    • Shut Down Time

      When shutting down your phone, it closes all apps in use. An oddly long time to shut it down could imply there’s spyware installed.


The Most Common Hidden Spy Apps for Android

While our digital experts here, at, looked for ways on how to efficiently find hidden spyware on Android, we came across the most widely used products by parents and employers.

These are the monitoring tools that provide the most reliable features and services. All these are specifically programmed to help parents protect their children from online predators and to assist employers in safely infusing technology into their business operations. Their popularity and competitiveness are the same reasons why these are utilized by other people for their malicious intentions.


PhoneSpector is one of the newest hidden spyware on Android and iOS phones offering spying capabilities utilizing the latest technologies. Among its most used features are GPS location tracking, keystroke recording, and web browser filtering. The product is user-friendly and works well with any phone brand, model, and OS.

Auto Forward

Auto Forward is one of the few pioneering apps that remain popular among consumers. It’s well-known for its remote installation feature wherein one gets to install the app without having physical access to the target device. Though Auto Forward is designed for less tech-savvy users, they offer 24/7 customer support with live tech specialists.

Highster Mobile

Highster Mobile is another popular spyware compatible with both Android and iOS. It offers various features to track activities on a phone and third-party apps. To purchase Highster Mobile, a one-time payment is required.


How Does Spyware Get On Your Phone?

Before we disclose the step-by-step procedures on how to find hidden spyware on Android devices, we’ll discuss how such software gets into your phone in the first place. These could also be great reminders anyone with malicious intentions can uncover ways to penetrate your device, compromise your system, and steal your data. Hence, be sure to always proceed with extreme caution when utilizing your phone, especially when in a public place or connected to public Wi-Fi.

In most cases, there are only two ways to install spyware on an Android phone – remote or manual installation. Regardless, both methods only take a few minutes.

    1. Remote Installation

      Monitoring programs which offer remote installation typically utilize an over-the-air (OTA) link. By only having access to the Android spyware file names, the user could install the app to the target phone through a virtual secure connection established by the software. In some cases, the remote installation could require only the phone number of the target to establish a connection.

    2. Manual Installation

      Manual installation doesn’t always mean the user will need to physically access the target phone. Though that’s one way to do it, manual installation typically works like phishing messages. Spyware app names are often masked and sent to the target phone through SMS or email and can’t be installed unless the user clicks on it and manually downloads the file.


How To Find Hidden Spyware On Android Smartphones

At this point, you already know what spy apps look like, who utilizes one, and how Android spy app file names make installation easier. Combining the aforementioned hidden spyware on Android red flags and the following steps, you’ll surely locate the well-hidden spyware on your phone with little hassle.

Option 1: Via Your Android Phone Settings

checking for spyware through settings

Though spy apps are often designed to work stealthily in the background, these could still leave trails in your phone’s settings. So, if you think a person has installed spyware on your personal device without consent, start by looking at the settings.

    • Step 1: Navigate to your Android smartphone’s Settings page which can be launched by tapping on the Gear icon from your home screen or searching it on your phone.
    • Step 2: Scroll through the available Settings Options and click on “Apps” or “Applications”.
    • Step 3: There should be another Settings icon on the upper right portion – three vertical dots or a Burger icon, depending on the brand or version of your Android phone. Select this.
    • Step 4: Select “Show system apps” or “Show system processes”.
    • Step 5: To locate spyware on Android, thoroughly review your smartphone’s applications and see if there are any apps you’re unaware of, don’t remember downloading, or apps with weird names.

Option 2: Via Your Android Phone Downloads

Checking the folder with downloads on an android smartphone

Regardless of the method utilized to install the spy software on your phone, the files or file names used would remain in the phone’s downloads. So, if you didn’t find anything suspicious in the settings, you could find spyware on Android by double-checking on this section.

    • Step 1: Navigate to your “My Files” or “Files”. This is typically the app with a brown file icon (depending on your Android phone’s brand and version).
    • Step 2: Click on Downloads to launch all downloaded files regardless of the type.
    • Step 3: Scroll through the downloaded files to see if there are any files you’re unaware of, don’t remember downloading, or apps with weird names.


What Phone Content Will Hidden Android Spyware Be Able To View?

What content becomes available after being infected with spyware?

Once the spyware file names on Android are successfully installed on the phone, all content and data sent, received, or stored on it can be exploited. Yes, even your engagements and interactions on third-party apps.

This is why you must be aware of the red flags and processes of how to find a spy app on Android smartphones. This is especially applicable if you’re no longer a minor child or are an employee that hasn’t been notified beforehand. After all, each of us has the right to privacy.

To paint a bigger picture and help you understand why unauthorized monitoring tool installation may be harmful, here’s the common data such software can acquire.

    • GPS locations – current and previous ones.
    • Incoming and outgoing phone call logs, including phone numbers, frequency and duration of calls, and time stamps.
    • SMS, chat, and email messages, including those that have been long since deleted.
    • Activities, user profiles, and contacts on social media apps and private messaging apps.
    • Photos, videos, audio files, documents, and other file types stored.
    • Searches conducted on Google Chrome and other search engines.

Spyware is something not to take lightly if it invades your Android phone. In some instances, some malicious apps can even extract sensitive login credentials. With all the tips and methods we’ve shared, we hope we addressed your How to find spy app on my phone? concern.

Pat Stanley

Cell phone spy software enthusiast and researcher. With over 8 years in the business I can offer the most comprehensive analysis and recommendations for virtually any program on the market. Learn more about Pat Stanley.