- Hollywood has us believing that a spyware app is only used by secret-agents and hackers.
- But in reality, anyone can get their hands on a professional spying app sold online for as little as a few tens of dollars.
- A commercial spyware app, also called a Stalkerware or Spouseware, is designed to stay secretive and keep tabs on everything you do on your phone, then report it back to whoever decided to spy on you.
5 Best Free Apps To Remove Stalkerware Or Spouseware
A Stalkerware can 1. track your location 2. activate the camera or microphone 3. record your voice and video calls 4. access SMS and social media chats from applications like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Skype, Viber, Telegram, etc. 5. access emails and files on the device 6. view your photo gallery and browser history 7.steal passwords and much more.
Some of the known stalkerware apps include PhoneSheriff, MobileSpy, Retina-X, TeenShield, TheTruthSpy, iSpyoo, mSpy, PhoneSpector, MobileTracker, Spyera, iKeyMonitor, Mobistealth, Cerberus, MonitorMinor, etc.
How We Tested? We evaluated all the top security apps for both Android and iOS in terms of security, reliability, ease-of-use and performance on our test device. We then obtained the data from trusted sources to come up with the best anti-spyware apps to remove stalkerware.
1. Kaspersky Internet Security For Mobile
This app from the cyber-security giant Kaspersky is a comprehensive protection tool that provides everything you need to feel secure.
- The app has 100% malware detection rates as per the recent lab reports.
- Kaspersky is one of the founding members of the Coalition Against Stalkerware group.
- Their anti-malware engine has significantly improved its stalkerware detection rates of late.
- It can scan downloaded apps for malware, ransomware, stalkerware and other security threats.
- An exclusive Privacy Alert function notifies the users about any stalking app as soon as it is detected.
- It can locate, lock and wipe your phone if it is lost or stolen.
- Kaspersky Internet Security for Mobile has no annoying ads, and its call-blocking feature works well.
- Kaspersky’s full scan can be slow.
- The free version has limited features available.
2. Malwarebytes Mobile Security
Malwarebytes detects and blocks tens of millions of cyber threats every day.
- Malwarebytes highly values user privacy and is a founding partner of the Coalition Against Stalkerware group.
- It continually updates its stalkerware database to include the latest and emerging stalking apps on the Internet.
- Searches all files and apps quickly and effectively for malware, stalkerware and other potentially unwanted programs.
- Conducts a privacy audit of your installed apps and identifies access privileges of each app.
- It keeps a tab on which apps can track your location, monitor your calls, or cost you extra in hidden fees.
- Features are limited in the free version.
3. Avira Antivirus Security
Avira Antivirus Security provides plenty of privacy features along with solid antivirus protection.
- Avira has joined the Coalition Against Stalkerware to beat back the threat to user security and privacy.
- It provides on-demand and real-time malware protection for your device.
- The installed apps are rated using a privacy scale to help you decide how much they can be trusted with your data.
- All apps and files are automatically checked for any adware, spyware, stalkerware or other types of malware.
- Even the updated apps are re-scanned when they’re finished updating, to ensure that no new files aren’t infected.
- It includes tools to protect your phone against loss and theft.
- Can be a little overwhelming for beginners.
4. McAfee Mobile Security
McAfee gives you the power to protect your personal information, and help keep your private data away from prying eyes.
- McAfee scans your phone for malicious code from files, apps and the Internet downloads.
- It scores highly in the independent lab tests on mobile cyber-threats.
- The App Privacy Check feature lets you know which apps may put your personal data privacy at risk.
- McAfee will alert you about any commercial spyware like stalkerware or surveillanceware if present on your device.
- It has a solid collection of anti-theft features to remotely trigger an alarm, lock, locate, take pictures with the Thief Cam and even wipe the device.
- The app is ad-supported.
- Detects a few false positives.
5. Avast Mobile Security
Avast Mobile Security is one of the top downloaded and highly rated free antivirus apps.
- Avast has been at the forefront in the fight against stalking apps.
- It can perform regular scans to detect different kinds of malware, including spyware, Trojans and more.
- Avast can scan and detect malicious apps even before you install them.
- Allows you to easily check app permissions to understand how each app accesses your phone.
- No matter which browser you’re using, Avast will protect you against fake and malicious websites.
- It has many performance enhancement tools and built-in anti-theft capabilities.
- Unbearable ads in the free version.
- Avast has had data privacy concerns in the past.
Danger Hiding In Plain Sight
Stalkerware hides in plain sight and spies on the most intimate and personal details of your life.
In recent years, the number of such apps has increased exponentially, and so have the number of incidents where partners have used stalkerware to harass, threaten or even physically assault partners.
Installing one of the above mentioned anti-stalkerware apps should bring you some much-needed relief and peace of mind.
In case you need more assistance in this regard, please contact the Coalition Against Stalkerware, formed by not-for-profit groups and major cybersecurity organizations.