How to understand if they are spying on us through the microphone of our cell phone and what to do to protect ourselves

The cell phone is an integral part of our lives and, even if we don’t think about it, i microphones present on it could be used to our detriment to spy on us by malicious people. Without falling into easy alarmism, it is important to take note of this possibility and adopt some measures to understand if they are spying on us from the microphone of the cell phone through suspicious apps, including checking the behavior of the battery and the lighting of some indicators on the screen. If so, you can eliminate the spy software with specific procedures that we analyze in the article.

Possible clues that the microphone is being used to spy on us

By paying attention to some details you can try to understand if someone is spying on us from the microphone. Since, as they say, there are “three clues in a test”, it is important to verify the appearance of more anomalies (as the occurrence of only one or two it could be attributable to other problems, which need to be investigated further) related to:

  • battery autonomy;
  • phone overheating;
  • suspicious noises during calls;
  • unexpected microphone activations.

One of the aspects to pay attention to most concerns thebattery autonomy. If this is rather poor even though we are applying the appropriate precautions, it could be that some malicious application is using the microphone in the background, thus affecting the autonomy of the device.

Also the overheating of the telephone could suggest this thesis. In the absence of hardware problems with the battery (and unfavorable environmental conditions), the overheating could be due to some background activity, including the use of the microphone by malicious software.

If during calls you or your interlocutor notice the presence of strange people noises, echoes or other such anomalies, this could be due to the fact that someone is eavesdropping on your conversations.

On some smartphones (for example on iPhone and on some Android smartphones) the activation of the microphone is signaled by a orange indicator or green. If you notice that the indicator turns on for no real reason, it could be another clue that your device’s microphone may be controlled by others.

The orange indicator on iPhone indicates that the microphone is activated. Credit: Apple.

What to do if your cell phone microphone is monitored and how to protect yourself

If you think that the mobile phone’s microphone is controlled by othersyou could try to resolve the situation by implementing some procedures.

First, take care of check application permissions. On Androidgo to Settings > Apps & notifications > App permissions > Microphone (bear in mind that the steps and items may differ depending on the version of Android you are using); while on iOSgo up Settings > Privacy & Security > Microphone. In both cases, then, disable microphone access for suspicious or unnecessary apps.

If yours is an Android phone, use a good antivirus app It is practically a must, given that the operating system of the “little green robot” is subject to cyber attacks of various kinds. Once installed, run a scan to identify and possibly eliminate spyware and malware nested in your device.

If you have not found concrete evidence that your cell phone microphone is being monitored but somehow still have an inkling that this may be the case, you could “cut your head off” and restore the device to its factory state (possibly after having made a backup of your personal data, given that the procedure will erase all the contents present in memory). This way you can remove any hidden spy software that has control over your microphone.

To prevent someone from listening to you through the microphone of your mobile phone, instead, Install apps only from verified and official sources (such as Google’s Play Store or Apple’s App Store), never open suspicious links (could lead to the installation of spyware) and, if you really want to sleep soundly, cover the microphone with tape. As indicated in a document from the US National Security Agency NSA (National Security Agency), the microphone should be covered when not in use (and this also applies to the camera). This is in fact the only certain way to avoid being spied on by the microphone.