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A Step-By-Step Guide On What To Do If Your Phone Is Hacked?

by Mubi 

what to do if your phone is hacked

In the era of digital connectivity, smartphones are an integral part of our daily lives. Compromising smartphone access is a daunting experience, and reclaiming is essential. Keep reading to know what to do if your phone is hacked.

Smartphones are extensions of daily life and contain whole personal information. The increase in reliance makes these devices vulnerable to hack. Discovering that a smartphone has been hacked could be alarming. During this situation, one needs to take urgent action.

Acknowledging the warning signs is the initial step to address the potential breach. This uncertain situation needs a measured and calmer response. Overcome the panic and attain a systematic approach to reclaim the device control.

We suggest you refrain from downplaying the signs of breach. Such avoidance may increase the risk and extent of the violation. Suspecting a hack needs immediate action, such as disconnecting the internet from the compromised device.

While living in the digital realm, understanding how to take steps against hacking is imperative. Learning to prosecute will safeguard personal data and privacy. Here, we will guide you on what to do if you think your phone is hacked.

Signs your phone might be hacked

Checking the signs of hacking and what to do if your phone has been hacked is fundamental. Your smartphone works as a digital mirror, which could have visible signs of compromise. Detection of hacked smartphones is crucial to safeguard personal information.

Several signs may indicate that mobile privacy is under threat. It is pivotal to be vigilant and recognize the warning signals for swift action:

  • Unusual battery drain
  • Unexpected data usage
  • Slow performance
  • Unfamiliar apps
  • Strange text messages or calls
  • Overheating
  • Changes in settings
  • Pop-ups and advertisements
  • Unusual account activity
  • Bluetooth or Wi-Fi turns on without a prompt
  • Difficulty shutting down the device

Unusual battery drain

You may notice a sudden and significant decline in battery life. Draining a battery could be a sign of any vicious activity. Hacking activities may consume more power than usual. The activities include unauthorised access or background processes.

Unexpected data usage

Notice extra data usage that is different from your regular activities. It indicates a hacked smartphone. Evil apps or activities can use your data without your knowledge.

Slow performance

Hacked phones experience slow performance. If the smartphone constantly stops or takes longer to respond to commands, there is some problem. Slow performance could be a result of unwanted processes running in the background.

Unfamiliar apps

Check your app settings for unfamiliar apps. Hackers might install some vicious applications to get access to your data. It will allow them to control your device. Some of the apps may attempt to mask those apps.

Strange text messages or calls

If there are unusual text messages and calls with no clue, it could be a sign of a hacked phone. Hackers use your device for spam messages or unauthorised calls you did not initiate.


A hacked phone may undergo increased activity and get overheated. This overactivity could be due to some wicked software and processes. If the device becomes unusually hot, there is a need for investigation.

Changes in settings

Keep a vigilant eye on uncertain changes in your phone settings. The expected changes may include alterations to security settings. It could be due to unfamiliar accounts added and modifications to permissions for different apps.

Pop-ups and advertisements

Unwanted and excessive pop-ups may redirect to unfamiliar websites. Such notifications and advertisements indicate potential problems. These invasions are there to attack your phone’s security.

Unusual account activity

Monitor your accounts for any suspicious activity. It may include unauthorised logins, password changes, and unexpected transactions. If you notice anything unusual, take a sudden action to secure the accounts.

Bluetooth or Wi-Fi turns on without a prompt

If you see Bluetooth or Wi-Fi settings activated without initiation, be careful. It is a clear sign of unauthorised access. Hackers use such features to exploit weaknesses in the device.

Difficulty shutting down the device

Suppose you face a problem shutting down your phone. Or your mobile restarts without command. It indicates that any wicked software is interfering with the device.

Immediately secure the device if you observe several signs of a potential hack. It includes disconnecting the internet or changing passwords. You may seek professional assistance to identify and remove unwanted software.

Regularly update your mobile’s software. Stay cautious about the apps you download. It may help prevent hacking incidents.

If your phone is hacked, what to do?

It is distressing if you think your phone is hacked. Discovering the situation needs decisive action to reduce risks. Additionally, it is crucial to reclaim control over your device. Follow these steps if you suspect or confirm that your phone has been hacked.

phone is hacked
Phone hacked
  • Stay calm
  • Disconnect from the internet
  • Change password
  • Enable two-factor authentication
  • Scan for malware
  • Remove unwanted apps
  • Update your phone’s software
  • Notify your contacts
  • Contact your mobile carrier
  • Find professional assistance
  • Monitor financial transactions
  • Reconnect safely
  • Implement preventive measures

Stay calm

It is natural to react and stay alarmed. Maintaining calmness is essential. Nonetheless, panic can reduce your ability to take effective and rational measures. Access the sensitivity of the situation with composure before proceeding.

Disconnect from the internet

If you get a notification that your phone is hacked, disable Wi-Fi. Even turn off mobile data on your phone. Cutting off the internet connection limits the hacker’s access to the device. It will prevent further unauthorised activities.

Change password

Change the password for all your accounts if your phone is hacked. One should change all passwords, including email, social media, banking, and other apps with sensitive information. Ensure that the new password is secure, unique, and robust.

Enable two-factor authentication

Activate two-factor authentication for all of your accounts. This featured security can add an extra layer of protection. It requires a secondary verification step by sending a code to your mobile device.

Scan for malware

Use an upright mobile security app to scan your device to detect such problems. If the phone’s operating system allows, make a thorough system scan. Such acts will see and remove malicious software.

Remove unwanted apps

Check the list of installed apps to remove doubtful applications. Some of the harmful apps are masked as less dangerous apps. Therefore, it is imperative to review the list keenly.

Update your phone’s software

Ensure that the phone’s operating system and all other apps are up-to-date. Software updates include security patches to address problems.

Notify your contacts

Inform your contacts about the potential breach of security. This immediate measure will prevent the spread of evil messages. It will also stop the effects of activities originating from compromised devices.

Contact your mobile carrier

Reach out to your mobile carrier to report the incident of the mobile hack. Inquire about extra security measures which you may adopt to be secure. They help you to secure your phone number and account.

Find professional assistance

If you need help handling the situation, seek help from cybersecurity professionals. You may even seek help from the device’s manufacturers. They will provide guidance to identify and resolve security issues.

Monitor financial transactions

Regularly monitor your bank and credit card statements. Check on your unauthorised transactions. Notice anything doubtful, and report your financial institution immediately.

Reconnect safety

After taking basic steps to secure your device, reconnect to the internet carefully. Be cautious about the websites you visit and the apps you download.

Implement preventive measures

Learn from the experience and take specific steps to prevent future security risks. It includes regular updates on your phone’s software. Use strong passwords and be careful about installed apps.

The primary step is minimising the impact of phone hacks. It should be a swift and decisive action. We suggest you consult cybersecurity professionals who may provide guidance specific to your situation.

What to do when an iPhone is hacked?

My iPhone has been hacked; what do I do? Discovering the situation can be disturbing. One needs immediate action to reduce the potential damage. Here are a few steps to follow to know what to do when someone hacks your phone:

Iphone hacked

  • Identify points of vulnerability
  • Change Apple ID password
  • Review and remove unwanted apps
  • Update iOS
  • Scan for any interruption
  • Review iCloud settings
  • Check email and account security
  • Reset all settings
  • Contact Apple support
  • Monitor accounts and activity
  • Educate yourself

Identify points of vulnerability

Conduct a thorough review to identify the potential weak points for hackers. After understanding these points, you can avoid the damage. Perform a complete security audit on your device to find the vulnerabilities.

Change Apple ID password

Go to settings > your name > password and security, then change password. Update your Apple ID password to prevent unwanted access to your iCloud account. You can even secure associated services.

In addition, turn on two-factor authentication for your Apple ID. It will ensure an extra layer of security that requires a verification code.

Review and remove unwanted apps

Check the list of installed apps and remove unfamiliar applications. Find unwanted apps which may come under other apps but could be hazardous for your device.

Update iOS

Ensure that the iPhone is running the latest version of iOS. Software updates can have security risks that can affect your device. Go to settings, click on “General,” and check “Software update” to check updates.

Scan for any interruption

iPhones are secure, but scanning for malware is an excellent idea. Consider using valuable security apps from the Apple store. Run a scan to check for any potential threats.

Review iCloud settings

Check iCloud settings to determine whether any unauthorised device is connected to your account. Go to settings > your name > iCloud > Manage storage, then backups to manage data.

Check email and account security

Review your email accounts connected with the iPhone. Change passwords for email accounts. In addition, check other accounts linked to your Apple ID.

Reset all settings

Suppose you feel that someone altered your smartphone settings. Reset all settings on your iPhone. Such security measures will not delete your data. However, it will restore the device system settings to their default configurations.

For this purpose, go to settings > General > Reset and reset all settings.

Contact Apple support

If you suspect a severe security breach, contact Apple Support for help. They will provide guidance and help you take additional measures to secure your device.

Monitor accounts and activity

Regularly monitor your Apple ID and associated accounts. Focus on any unusual activity. If you notice anything doubtful, take immediate action.

Educate yourself

Learn about common cyberattacks and social engineering tactics. It will help to prevent the same attacks in the future. Be watchful about clicking on links in messages. Even do not open emails if they seem suspicious.

Are you wondering what to do if someone hacks your phone? Remember that prevention is fundamental. Regularly update your iOS while using unique passwords. Enable two-factor authentication and stay cautious about your installed apps and links. If you are still in trouble, seek help from Apple or any qualified professional.

Android: What to do if your phone is hacked?

Scrutinise your accounts for signs of unauthorised access. Focus on securing your digital identity. Follow the same steps: disconnect the internet and change the password. Leverage security apps to conduct a detailed analysis that can strengthen your defences.

  • Update your Android version
  • Review device administrator settings
  • Check app permissions
  • Remove root access
  • Review Google account activity
  • Factory reset
  • Monitor financial transactions
  • Stay up-to-date

Update your Android version

Ensure that the Android operating system of your device is up-to-date. Software updates often include security deficiencies. Go to settings > system > software update to check updates.

Review device administrator settings

Go to settings > security > device administrators to check shady apps, Especially those with administrator access. Overturn the access for any app you do not find trustworthy.

Check app permissions

Review and manage app permissions. Go to settings > Apps > select app > and permissions. Repel unnecessary permissions, which could be excessive for the apps to work appropriately.

Remove root access

If your Android is facing trouble, consider unrooting. Rooting can expose your device to extra security risks.

Review Google account activity

Check Google account activities for shady sign-ins or unauthorised access. Go to your Google Account > Security > and check recent security events.

Factory reset

If no other option exists to resolve the issue and you detect some serious compromise, perform a factory reset. Performing a factory reset on your device will erase all data. Therefore, ensure to back up important information first.

Monitor financial transactions

Check your bank and credit card statements for any unauthorised transactions. If you notice anything unusual, immediately report it to the relevant financial institution.

Stay up-to-date

Learn all the standard cybersecurity practices and threats. Understanding the basics will help you protect yourself in the future. Be vigilant about clicking on links in messages or emails.

What to do if the phone is hacked? Reporting the incident

What to do if you get a notification that your phone is hacked? Report an issue immediately to reduce potential risk and get help. Reporting the incident is pivotal to preventing further security breaches and protecting others.

  • Filing a report with Cybersecurity authorities
  • Contact law enforcement
  • Report to the platform provider
  • Use online reporting tools
  • Report to App Developers
  • Social media and email providers
  • Document details
  • Consult with cybersecurity professionals
  • Follow-up

Filing a report with Cybersecurity authorities

What do hackers do with your phone number? Officially file an account to create a record of the incident. Depending on the country, particular agencies would handle cybersecurity incidents. Research to file a report and inform the relevant authorities.

Contact law enforcement

If you feel hacking involves criminal activity, identify unauthorised access to sensitive information. Consider reporting the incident to a local law enforcement agency. Provide them with the relevant details and any evidence you may have.

Report to the platform provider

Report to the respective platform provider if your phone is part of an Apple environment (iOS) or Google (Android).

  • For iOS devices, contact Apple Support to report the issue.
  • For Android devices, report to Google Support.

Use online reporting tools

There are many platforms with reporting tools for such incidents. Report the problem through proper channels. In the United States, one may report to the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Complaint Assistant.

Report to App Developers

If you doubt any app facilitates the hack, report the issue to an app developer. The app developers have the authority to investigate or take the right action.

Social media and email providers

If your social media or email account is in trouble, report the issue to providers. They provide support or a reporting mechanism for such incidents.

Document details

Document the details about the incident before filing the report. Provide information about when you have noticed the issue. Note down suspicious activities and any changes to account settings. Prevent the spread of misinformation and enhance awareness about the subject.

Consult with cybersecurity professionals

You need expert advice if you are still determining the breach’s extent and what to do if a hacker has your phone number. Consult cybersecurity professionals who will assess the situation and guide you accordingly.


After reporting the incident, follow up on the report. Stay engaged with the support channels. In some cases, it takes much time to resolve issues. Henceforth, regular communication is pivotal.

The reporting process may vary depending on your location and involved bodies. When in doubt, seek help from local law enforcement or cybersecurity professionals. They will guide you through the appropriate channel according to the nature of the incident.

Restoring your device and data

Restoring your data is necessary in a hacking or compromised situation. Here are some general steps to restore your device and data. The process may vary depending on the device and operating system.

  • Backup your data
  • Factory reset
  • Reinstall apps
  • Restore data
  • Review security settings
  • Update software
  • Install security software
  • Be cautious about third-party apps

Backup your data

Before fixing the device, ensure the recent backups for essential data. Save contacts, documents, photos, and app data. People can back data through cloud services, built-in backup options, or third-party backup apps.

Review the relevant information. It may include account credentials, essential messages, or app-specific data.

Factory reset

Initiate a factory reset to wipe out potential malware to restore your device.

  • Got to device settings.
  • Navigate to “system and updates.”
  • Look for “reset options.”
  • Choose “factory data reset” or choose any same option.
  • Confirm the action to erase all data.

Reinstall apps

After the factory reset, reinstall the app from the Google Play Store. Ensure that you reinstall apps from reputable resources.

Restore data

Restore data from a previous backup during or after the initial setup or after the app is reinstalling. Follow the on–screen instructions to restore the data.

Review security settings

Set up strong passwords and review other security settings. Restore your device from a secure backup. Ensure there are no malicious remains.

Update software

Constantly update your mobile software to minimise the risk of hacking. Ensure that the device’s operating system and all apps are current.

Install security software

Install any reputable security software and antivirus apps. They will ensure an additional layer of real-time protection.

Be cautious about third-party apps

What to do if your phone is hacked? Exercise caution while downloading apps from any third-party resources. It will minimise the risk of compromised applications.

Preventive measures for future security

Preventing security breaches on phones requires:

  • Combination of proactive measures
  • Responsible online behaviour
  • Ongoing vigilance

Secure your digital future and implement proactive measures. It will strengthen your defences against future threats.

Regular back up your data

Safe your information with regular data backups. Ensure most minor losses during future breaches.

Install security apps

Use better antivirus or security apps to provide additional protection. It will ensure protection against other threats.

Stay informed

What to do if your phone gets hacked? Learning is power; thus, stay informed about the latest security threats. Adapt the defence and adopt innovative measures.

Periodically review privacy settings.

Review and adjust your privacy settings to ensure protection. It will limit the potential weak points.

Download apps from official stores

Only download apps from official app stores. Use Google Play Store for Android and Apple Store for iOS. Avoid third-party app sources to avoid trouble.

Review account activity

Review your accounts to determine unusual activity. Keep an eye on social media, email, and financial statements.

Secure your lock screen

Use a secure lock screen including PIN, password, fingerprint, or face recognition. Avoid using easily accessible patterns.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Frequently asked questions help people to find more concise and relevant information about the topic.

What to do if a hacker has your phone number?

A compromised phone number can lead to multiple issues to identify unauthorised access. Take immediate action if you feel the hacker has your phone number. Secure your accounts linked to the number by changing your password.

Enhance security measures when you monitor any unusual activity. Use a secondary number for authentication. Be cautious while sharing personal information online. Educate yourself about breaching attempts. Report the suspicious activity to local authorities and cybersecurity agencies.

What can hackers do with your phone number?

A hacker can exploit your phone number for identity theft. In addition, they may get unauthorised access and financial fraud. They can attempt SIM card swaps, block messages, and engage in malicious attacks.

What do I do if my SIM card is hacked?

A hacked SIM comes with severe security risks. Contact your mobile carrier and report the incident. Request a new SIM card and change the password of all accounts linked to the previous number. Apply additional security measures if you monitor unusual activity.

What to dial to see if your phone is hacked?

There is no specific dialling code to check the hacking of the device. Follow cybersecurity best practices and run malware scans. Seek professional guidance to prioritise prevention and ensure regular updates.

How to see if your phone is hacked or not?

Detect a hacked phone by observing unusual signs. Check on battery drain, slow performance, unfamiliar apps, and strange messages. Confirm the hack by disconnecting from the internet and changing passwords.

What to do if your WhatsApp account is hacked?

Change your password and enable two-step verification if your WhatsApp account is hacked. Contact WhatsApp support and incident to seek help.


If you need help with handling the situation, seek help from professionals. You may even contact device manufacturers for guidance. Adopt preventive measures, including device updates and apps you install. It will help to reduce the risk of security breaches in the future.

What to do if your phone is hacked? Adopt preventive measures and stay informed about best practices of cybersecurity. Reduce the risk of security breaches on your device and protect personal information. Update your knowledge of emerging threats and security trends. It is essential to maintain a secure digital environment.

What to do if your phone is hacked? It requires swift action, investigation, and other preventive measures. Follow the steps to empower yourself and reclaim control of your digital life. Stay informed and strengthen your defences against future threats.

In the end, regularly review and adjust your privacy settings. Put additional protection, limiting potential weak points. Stay informed about the latest security threats. After getting notified that your phone is hacked, adapt your defences accordingly.

About the author 

Mubi Ace

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