How to find and remove stalkerware on an iPhone

Do you think someone is tracking or spying on your phone?

Stalkerware is spying software that’s installed on your phone without your permission and used to track what you do. If you’re worried that somebody is stalking your iPhone, this article will help you to find it and remove it. (Looking for help with an Android?)

Stalkerware on iPhones

Although it’s difficult to get stalkerware that monitors everything you do onto iPhones, there are are still apps that let stalkers invade your privacy by doing things like tracking your location.

Unfortunately, finding stalkerware on iPhones automatically is very difficult. There aren’t any apps for it on the App Store.

If you have a computer, you can buy a program called Certo that will check iPhones, although only when the phone is plugged into the computer.

You can also check your phone by following these steps:

1. Check for a malicious profile

To check if a malicious profile has been installed on your device go to Settings > General. If you see Profiles & Device Management, click on it and then click on More Details and then Remove Management.

This profile can also exist if your company manages your phone, so if you are using a company phone, check this with your company IT team.

If you don’t see Profiles & Device Management, then a malicious profile probably hasn’t been installed on your device (good!).

2. Remove unknown apps

If you have an app on your device that’s being used to spy on you, the chances are it’s disguised as something else. The best way to deal with this situation is simply to decide what should be on your phone.

Go through the list of apps and uninstall anything you don’t recognise or don’t want.

3. Change your iCloud password

Stalkers can use iCloud to read your messsages, or look at your contacts or pictures, if they can get access to your account. So, if you suspect you’re being stalked, go to iCloud and change your password to something that’s difficult to guess, and don’t share it with anyone.

To make your iCloud account even more secure, follow Apple’s instructions for enabling two-factor authentication.

4. Change your other passwords

Even if a stalker can’t get access to your iPhone, they can still find out things about you if they can guess the passwords to any of the apps you use for social media, email or messaging.

5. Consider other tech

If you suspect stalkerware, it may be possible that you are being subjected to some other form of technology abuse or surveillance. If you are concerned about an individual’s knowledge of your activities, this could be linked to other things such as hidden CCTV cameras or GPS trackers, or they may have access to your social media accounts.

The Coalition Against Stalkerware logo

If you’re worried about being spied on or stalked via your devices, please visit the Coalition Against Stalkerware’s website, which has good advice and details of support organisations in different countries.