Spy On This!: Spyware Can Be Installed Remotely On Your Cell Phone
Although mobile spyware isn't new, it has increased in popularity, and is wreaking havoc on the lives of people who unwittingly have spyware installed on their phone. Touted as a means to detect a cheating spouse, or to keep track of kids, mobile spyware has become a powerful tool to keep tabs on anyone, for anything and any reason. I am not a spyware aficionado, I am however, a pissed off consumer, who is angered that my privacy, and my right to it can be compromised for as little as $5.95. Well, the price doesn't matter, it could cost $5 million smackers and I would be just as incensed! Actually...I might be flattered that someone would pay that much to hack into my mundane life!
I don't care so much about the cheating spouse; I'm single, and care even less about keeping tabs on a kid; mine is grown. I do care however, about the employer, the potential employer, and any entity or person who may develop an opinion of me because they've installed spware on my phone, and now have access to what should be personal. I really don't have anything to hide, I just have things that are...well, none of your business! My views and opinions are relevant to who I am conversing with and intended only for that person or persons.
Many people have become victimized by this personal espionage. Understand this people, your life is not your own! Once spyware is installed on your mobile phone, conversations both on and off the phone can be monitored, and text and e-mail messages can be read. Spyware can be installed remotely or directly to your phones browser. Phones highly vulnerable, are smartphones and pda's. Technology advances enable mobile phone users to engage in activities once limited to a personal computer. Technology advances have also enabled these same users to be disadvantaged by another's curiosity, or blatant disregard for a persons inherent right.
I no longer feel secure when using my mobile phone. Spyware searches and seizes information by running continuously in the background; virtually undetected. Now someone knows that I called my cousin Karen a poo-poo head! That's not your business and ...uhm... I'm sorry cousin!
The following, are a few subtle indicators that spyware has been installed on your mobile phone:
- Wireless bill is unusually high - data usage has increased, but your data usage has not.
- Phone won't turn off - your phone does not respond to your request to turn it off.
- Short battery life - you need to charge your battery more often.
- Background light - your phone lights up when it's not in use, or it stays lit longer than it should when you turn it off.
- Background noises - unusual, can suggest that someone is listening to your conversation.
- Phone is warm - it's normal for a phone to warm up while in use, and cool down after use. A phone that is warm while not is use, may be suggestive that spyware is running.
To remove spyware, anti-virus software can be installed on your phone (only use a reputable source), you can delete files and programs that did not come with your phone, or you can return your phone to it's original factory default settings by a master reset. Review the user manual that came with your phone or contact your mobile carrier for support. To minimize the chance of a direct spyware installation, do not let anyone borrow your phone, unless you absolutely, positively and unequivocally trust that person...okay!
You don't have to hack into my phone, to know what's happening in my world. I can save you money and time, and simply tell you what's happening....nothing...well, almost nothing. How about you hack over here and take out the trash, better yet wash the dishes I left in the sink, or walk my dog. You can make yourself useful, and we'll both have benefit.
I'm in favor of expanding the Bill Of Rights to specifically include a right to privacy. Article Four of the Bill Of Rights asserts that people have a right to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects against unreasonable search and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. If you read this as I do, the words effects and things stand out. Okay....I know I made the words bold...the point is, to me, these words apply to my mobile phone, the applications on my phone, text, email, calls and all other features of said phone.
The Electronic Communications Privacy Act and the Wiretapping Act, both should secure our privacy, but there exist instances where these acts offer inadequate and limited protection for the consumer. Like the fourth amendment, the aforementioned acts are often challenged as legal protections when a consumers privacy is invaded.
There are many other laws imposed by the Federal Government, that not only protect our privacy, but require certain agencies to give public notice to clients regarding their privacy rights, and fully disclose how identifying information is used and protected. Each entity must further allow clients the right to access their records, and some provide the ability to opt-out or opt in.
I propose that mobile phone users are given an opt-out choice before spyware is installed on their phone. This option would eliminate any misgivings that one would develop after reading my text about a co-worker with a wedgie so bad that a pocket popped out of her mouth!
Many states have their own privacy laws. Not only do the laws vary from state to state, but they vary between the state and the Federal Government. Federal supercedes state when there is a conflict of the law. So, now we're right back to where we started. Spyware will and can be used for matters other than infidelity, or when your kid is still at lunch after the bell has rang.
You spyware people, I don't know if there's an actual name for you, but leave us alone! Some of us really aren't saying or doing anything different than you on your un-hacked phone! I've got to go, I've gotta call my friend Carla and tell her what Denise said Tony told her about Rhonda. But, first I've got to put this anti virus software on my phone, so you won't know...what - I - said!