What is Stalkerware applications and how they affect Android-smartphone work

In recent years, a lot of new spyware, tracking user activity, has appeared. And if earlier the main danger was basically Spyware and Malware applications, now Stalkerware has been added to them.

But what exactly do and why are their main target android device? Next, we will tell you in detail what Stalkerware is, how to detect it and how it differs from ordinary spyware applications.

What is Stalkerware Applications

Stalkerware is a type of malicious software that writes user data, and then transmits them to a third party. As a rule, such applications are unnoticed for the victim. It is for this reason that they violate the data confidentiality policy and on legal grounds are considered viral software.

Stalkerware applications can track various types of data. For example, transmit SMS messages or the geographic location of the victim. It usually depends on the goals of Stoking. At the same time, some applications can act comprehensively, tracking the entire information entering the smartphone.

than STALKERWARE applications differ from another spyware

If you have to deal with spyware According to (Spyware or Malware), then most likely the description of Stalkerware applications seems to you with something familiar. And there are a number of reasons for it. Stalkerware may also include keyboard spies and other malicious programs. So what is the difference between STALKERWARE from another spy software?

The main difference is that spyware to penetrate the victim's device under the guise of a legal application and sends these data to an unknown malicious agent. Stalkerware applications openly advertise their functionality to potential customers, and after being installed on the victim’s smartphone, they send his data to the email address specified by the “stalker” (client).

As you may have guessed, stalkerware applications are installed not by the victim, but by the person who wants to spy on her. This is the main difference between spyware and stalkerware. For example, a victim can install spyware and malware on his smartphone on his own, completely by accident, while stalkerware software is installed on someone else's device, with a specific purpose.

Most often, stalkerware applications are used by people who do not trust their love partners. For example, to check the spouse for fidelity. In such a case, SMS messages, browser history, email or geographic location may be monitored. Parental control programs can also be attributed to stalkerware software.

How do stalkerware applications get onto Android smartphones

And yet, why are Android users affected by stalkerware applications? Back in July, the portal Z6Mag talked about how Google removed seven stalkerware applications from the Play Store. And each was aimed at a specific audience. Here is a list of them below:

  • Track Employees Check Work Phone Online Spy Free
  • Spy Kids Tracker
  • Phone Cell Tracker
  • Mobile Tracking
  • Spy Tracker
  • SMS Tracker
  • Employee Work Spy

Unfortunately, this is not the first time that Google has removed malicious spyware apps from the Play Store. It is for this reason that users of Android devices are more likely than others to become victims of illegal surveillance.

What exactly do stalkerware applications do

Despite the fact that Google was able to find and remove most of the stalkerware applications from the Play Store, they can still be found on the Internet. To get a clearer idea of ​​​​them, we invite you to take a closer look at several examples of those that have already been blocked by Google.

SMS Tracker

Most often, you can find out what an application does from its name. For example, SMS Tracker tracks SMS messages. But if you read its description more carefully (which was in the Play Store before deletion), you would immediately understand that this is not the whole list of tracked data.

SMS Tracker was positioned by the developers as a tool for parental control. It could be installed on a child's smartphone, after which the detailed report came to the specified when registering Email: the browser history, incoming and outgoing SMS messages, call log, geographic location.

Employee Work SPY

Employee Work SPY worked on the same principle as SMS Tracker. However, the developers were positioned a little differently - as an app for surveillance for subordinates. Therefore, it was most often set on corporate smartphones.

According to the development of the developer, Employee Work SPY allowed to monitor the productivity of subordinates, avoid possible information leaks and, oddly enough, possible espionage from competitors. Unlike other similar applications, Employee Work SPY was to notify the owner of the smartphone about his work, but in fact it was not.

The true objectives of Stalkerware applications

As you could have noticed, most often from Stalkerware applications good intentions and they do not put the goal to steal others Personal data or harvest to anyone. Often, developers are completely manageable to position this software as additional protection.

Despite the benefit that such a software should carry, the methods that these applications use are not at all ethical. In addition, they fully violate the data privacy policy. It is for this reason that STALKERWARE applications received a label of malicious or viral software.

How stalkerware applications are masked

All Stalkerware applications are greatly masked, so they cannot be stumbled upon them by chance. If you see a label on the screen with the name "SMS Tracker", you will immediately remove it. Therefore, this software works a little different than ordinary viruses.

Immediately after installation, the application downloads additional espionage tools to the sacrifice smartphone, which operate in with background, and then destroys all visible traces. Because of this, it is so difficult to understand that the device is infected with malicious software.

Which devices are exposed to Stalkerware applications

Unfortunately, Stalkerware applications are found not only on Android smartphones. In theory, this software can be installed on any device where there are opportunities for downloading third-party programs. For example, it is often installed on corporate personal computers, to control the subordinates.

A vivid example of this software is Flexispy. This Stalkerware Soft, who offered jealous spouses surveillance services for her husband or wife. Moreover, according to the developer's application, the program could be installed both on a personal computer and on the phone.

How to remove STALKERWARE Appendix

The main problem of STALKERWARE software in the complexity of detection is not displayed in the list of installed programs. Spy tools that are directly survened, work in the background, imperceptibly for the victim.

Unfortunately, if you use conventional antivirus programs that are not aimed at discovering Stalkerware applications, the system scanning will not give any results. It is for this reason that it is necessary to use the software that can define STALKERWARE. For example, Kaspersky.

If you want to fully clean the device from spyware, it is best to reset to factory settings. Of course, for many it can be problematic. After all, in case of reset, all user data will be deleted, some of the information will be transferred to cloud storage, and then restore it for a long time. Nevertheless, it is the most reliable way to get rid of spyware.

Once you make sure that the Stalkerware application managed to completely delete from the phone, be sure to install Password or change the existing ones more reliable. It should secure a mobile device from re-infection.

The protection of the smartphone from Stalkerware applications

STALKERWARE is not exactly the usual virus, the work of which is fully contrary to the data privacy policy. Despite the fact that the only true way to make sure that the device was infected with such spyware no, you can still carry out a number of preventive measures that will help clean the phone. To do this, it is enough to reset to factory settings or take advantage of antivirus, which specializes in discovery of Stalkerware applications.