Can an iPhone be hacked?
Apple likes to advertise some of its products as “hacker-proof” but, given enough time and effort, any device can be hacked. While it may be true that Apple and iOS security is slightly tougher than Android security, that doesn’t mean it’s “unhackable.”
As a rule of thumb, if a device can connect to the internet, it can be hacked. Mobile devices are particularly susceptible to hacking, partly because many neglect implementing cybersecurity measures. Many are quick to secure their home computers but forget that the device in their pocket is essentially a tiny computer with the same potential vulnerabilities.
Your device’s security needs the same attention as your computer’s security. No matter the operating system, you need protection.
How can an iPhone get hacked?
Despite Apple’s claims, an iPhone can fall victim to the same vulnerabilities that all mobile devices do. Here are some of the most common ways an iPhone can be hacked:
- Insecure Wi-Fi network. A lot of people rely on free public Wi-Fi. Hackers know this and often lay traps for unsuspecting victims. Always make sure that the public Wi-Fi you’re connecting is legitimate. If it isn’t, it’ll be easy for a hacker to gain access.
- Suspicious apps. Do your research before downloading a potentially suspicious app. A good indication of a dodgy app is checking the reviews before downloading. Once you know the signs, spotting malicious apps is easy. Think twice before you download apps.
- Social engineering. Hackers will try anything and everything to make you click on a link or email you shouldn’t. Be wary of anyone or any app trying to get you to quickly press or click suspicious links. Real iPhone security measures will never force a pop-up window to appear and beg you to quickly press a button before it’s too late.
Signs your iPhone is hacked
Luckily, due to the amount of time we all spend on our phones, it becomes quite obvious when they’re acting out of the ordinary. Here are some of the telltale signs that your iPhone is hacked:
- iPhone overheating and constant low battery. This is normally a sign that a process is running in the background without your knowledge. A battery draining faster than usual is worth thinking twice about.
- You’re informed of strange messages from contacts. Some malware is programmed to spread to as many devices as possible. This normally involves messaging an entire contacts list with a dodgy link that installs the malware once pressed.
- Mysterious messages and texts. Check your messages, if you don’t recognize the latest ones then you might be hacked.
- iPhone performance has dropped. If your iPhone is acting a lot slower than usual, that means the processing power is being used for something else.
- High data usage. Have you noticed that your mobile data is draining quicker than usual? Has your mobile data phone bill skyrocketed? It’s definitely a sign that something isn’t right.
What to do if your iPhone has been hacked
Before you immediately settle on a factory reset and wipe your phone, know that you might not need to do so. Head straight to your iPhone’s settings and check which apps have been downloaded last. Notice any new apps that shouldn’t be there? Delete it immediately.
If you’ve removed every sign of suspicious activity from your phone and the problems persist, it’s time for a factory reset. Hopefully, you’ll have backup plans already in place so the inconvenience of a reset is mitigated. iCloud is invaluable for helping restore old settings and data.
Lastly, once the malicious files have been cleared away, it’s time to invest some time and effort in mobile security for your device.
How to protect your iPhone from being hacked again
A number of methods exist that will reinforce your mobile security, and those who rely on Apple devices should catch up with some iPhone security tips. Luckily, they don’t require much effort on your part. Some methods require installing new software, and others merely need a slight change to your daily routine.
Remember that if one device connected to your Apple ID is compromised, every other device connected to that Apple ID could be in danger. A lot of malware attacks will try their hardest to spread malware even further
- Invest in a VPN. NordVPN is easy to use, and doesn’t require much cybersecurity know-how. The simplicity of the app makes it the perfect VPN for iPhone All you need is to log in and press “Quick Connect” to instantly be protected with next-level encryption. Snoopers will be left frustrated. NordVPN also comes with a few more extra security features to keep hackers on their toes.
- Use a password manager. Many of us reuse passwords and lack any kind of strong password. Unfortunately, hackers are aware of this. A reliable password manager, like NordPass, will automatically create unique passwords and store them in an encrypted vault only you can access.
- Turn on auto-updates. Many cybercriminals rely on the complacency of their victims. If you continue to use outdated software and operating systems, that means important security patches can be fixed.
Knowledge is power when it comes to combating hackers. Make yourself aware of the signs of an iPhone being hacked so you can handle the situation as soon as possible.