Table of contents
- Are phone calls private?
- How can someone hear your phone calls?
- How to know if someone is listening to your calls
- How to check if someone is listening to your Android calls
- How to tell if someone is listening to your iPhone calls
- Ways to block someone from listening to your calls
- How to stop someone from listening to your calls on an Android phone
- How to stop someone from listening to your calls on an iPhone
- Who is listening to your phone calls?
Are phone calls private?
Phone calls, via a landline or mobile phone, should be private. However, it’s important to note that a third person can listen to your phone calls if they have the right tools and technology.
Usually, this kind of surveillance is performed by law enforcement agencies during an investigation. Unfortunately, it is also possible for stalkers and scammers to spy on their targets through specialized software.
How can someone hear your phone calls?
To listen to your phone calls, someone needs to compromise your phone. Tapping landlines is no longer necessary—now, hackers only need to install spyware on your mobile device to listen in.
What is spyware?
Spyware is a type of software that lets someone gather information from your device, including phone records. The most advanced spyware, like the Pegasus spyware, can enable people to listen to your phone calls directly.
How to know if someone is listening to your calls
Are you worried that someone listens to your calls? Here are the signs of someone listening to your phone calls:
- Low battery life. Spyware running on your phone will cause the battery to drain quicker than expected.
- Device running hot or showing performance issues. Due to the extra strain put on your device by the malicious software, you may also notice heat and performance issues.
- Excessive mobile data usage. Sending recorded calls to an unauthorized listener will use a notable amount of data. If your mobile data usage increases when you suspect someone of spying, the situation may warrant further investigation.
- Signs of an information leak. If information leaks match statements you've made while talking on the phone, someone may be listening to your calls. However, keep in mind that this can easily have other explanations.
- Unusual third-party apps. One of the clearest signs that someone has tapped your phone is the presence of unusual third-party apps that turn out to be spyware. While a sophisticated hacker or well-funded organization, like the NSA, likely wouldn't use an easily identifiable application to listen to your calls, the average stalker or spy might.
We've mentioned what to look for when you suspect phone tapping. Now, let's discuss how you can investigate the issue further on iOS and Android devices.
How to check if someone is listening to your Android calls
If you think that someone is listening to calls you make on your Android phone, you'll need to identify any installed spy or stalkerware.
Our devices can become quite cluttered, and a stalker may rely on your inattention to slip malicious software among your other applications. Simply analyzing each app on your smartphone may be enough to find the threat.
Is there spyware on your phone? Here’s how to find out:
- On your Android, navigate to Settings > Apps.
- Scan the list for apps that you don’t remember installing. If you find any that look suspicious, delete them immediately.
Next, check your battery and data usage statistics to identify suspicious applications. Here's how to check how much power each app on your Android device has been using:
- Go to Settings > Battery and device care > Battery.
- Tap Usage since last full charge and analyze the app list.
Here's how to check how much mobile network traffic each app on your Android device has been using:
- Go to Settings > Connections > Data Usage.
- Tap Mobile data usage and analyze the app list.
If the software has been listening to your calls and sending audio to another location, you should see evidence of high internet usage relating to a suspicious application.
Finally, check for unusual background noise during calls. If you’ve been hearing any strange noises during your calls, like echoes or buzzing, it’s a sign that someone is listening.
How to tell if someone is listening to your iPhone calls
If you want to know if someone has compromised your iPhone, you'll need to check for signs of spyware. Generally, iOS's tight security makes it difficult for hackers to abuse. However, some surveillance apps are available in the official App Store.
Fortunately, Apple has added the App Privacy Report to its mobile operating system, allowing you to easily see when apps have accessed sensitive information or hardware, including your microphone.
Here's how to turn on App Privacy Report in iOS:
- Go to Settings > Privacy & Security > App Privacy Report.
- Tap Turn on App Privacy Report.
Once the feature is on, your iPhone will gather and share data about app behavior, and you'll be able to review your report in the same settings location. If an application is spying on you, the evidence should be clear. You may notice that an unknown third-party app is frequently accessing your microphone and making connections to odd domains. In which case, you've likely identified the problem.
If you suspect that someone is intercepting your calls rather than listening to them, you can input certain codes to find out for sure if someone has tapped your phone using the intercept method.
Some mobile data providers enable call forwarding detection services that can track phone numbers and alert you if someone has forwarded your calls to another number without your knowledge. You should contact your carrier to find out if this is an option for you.
Ways to block someone from listening to your calls
If you find that someone is indeed listening to your calls, you need to act quickly. Immediately remove any spy software from your device and take steps to prevent future infections.
Sometimes, the issue may be with the operating system itself. If you believe that Google or Apple's own software is listening in on your conversations, you can take steps to remedy the issue.
How to stop someone from listening to your calls on an Android phone
Once you've discovered the application that's listening to your phone calls, you should delete it immediately. If the malware is particularly stubborn or difficult to identify, a good security app, like Clario, can help you find and cancel any threats.
Here’s how to use Clario AntiSpy’s Spyware detector:
- Download Clario AntiSpy and create an account.
- Go to Spyware scan.
- Select Run a deep scan. This will find any hidden spyware on your device.
How to stop someone from listening to your calls on an iPhone
Once you've identified spyware on your iPhone, you should take steps to remove it. In most cases, simply deleting the rogue application is enough to end your stalker's operation.
You should also change your passcode and Apple ID password and secure your device. This is vital, as whoever installed the spy software to listen to your calls would've needed access to your device and iCloud account.
If, instead, you believe that a hacker is exploiting an unpatched vulnerability in the operating system itself, you may need to take additional steps to resolve the issue.
For future protection, you should consider installing Clario AntiSpy for iOS. The security app's fraud link checker can help identify issues before you accidentally tap yourself into an unfavorable situation.
Who is listening to your phone calls?
You’re now armed with the knowledge you need to find out if anybody has listened to your cell phone calls. Just remember—phone tapping is illegal in many places, and you should always report any genuine safety or privacy threats to local law enforcement. You have rights, and you don't need to put up with someone listening to your calls.