How to Detect a Keylogger on iPhone or Mac: A Comprehensive Guide

Updated: August 8, 2020


Apple makes some of the most secure devices. Hence it doesn’t come as a surprise that it’s difficult to install a keylogger on the iPhone unless the device is jailbroken or the person had physical access to it.

iPhones are known to be hard to hack, but there are ways to unlock iPhone passcode and get access to private information. If you’re worried about someone having installed a keylogger on your phone then worry not, we have covered some great tips on how to detect a keylogger on iPhone.

| Read also: How to Detect a Keylogger on Android

Can you put spyware on an iPhone?

Yes, it is possible to put spyware on an iPhone. Keyloggers and other spyware tools are designed to run silently on your device and stay hidden while reading your text messages and other files. This is why it is hard to scan the iPhone for spyware.

Warning signs: How to know if a keylogger is installed

Here are some warning signs that can help you know if a keylogger has been installed on your phone:

Heating Up
The battery may begin to heat up even when the phone is not in use. This happens because the keylogger is at work even when you’re not using the phone. Plus, phones with spyware and other such software often also take longer to charge due to the same reason.
High Data Usage
Keep an eye on how much data you’re using, especially when your phone isn’t actively being used. High volumes of data indicate the presence of hidden tools sending and receiving information.
Slow Device
If your phone is suddenly hanging a lot, then it might be due to the presence of a keylogger. These software ‘read’ apps and can cause them to crash or get slow.
Noisy Calls
Do you hear background noise when you’re on the phone? It might be due to a keylogger installed on the device.

How to detect a keylogger on an iPhone

Use an Anti Malware Tool

Just like computers, mobile devices can get hacked or attacked as well. This is why there is no shortage of anti-malware or anti-keylogger tools on the market. You will find several apps designed to protect your device and delete all unwanted applications, including apps that stay hidden.

One of such anti-malware programs is EtreCheck.


 It was primarily marked as a Mac keylogger detector. With its help, you can detect serious problems on your Mac, remove annoying adware and just see what your device is doing on the side. Its reports protect your personal information when posted online and make no changes without your consent.

EtreCheck doesn’t require the phone owner to perform any manual task. All you need to do is to download > install > run the software.

Install Little Snitch

Little Snitch is a tool designed to make ‘invisible visible.’ With this app, you will be able to see what data is being sent and received through your device.

It can be set to send alerts in case an unauthorized or unsafe connection is identified.

little snitch


The app offers real-time data and can be set to work in  silent mode . A look at detailed charts will help you identify if unauthorize information is being sent or received from your device.

While it cannot delete these apps on your behalf, it can be used to protect your social media account and text messages from intruders.

Make use of two-factor authentication (2FA)

Two-factor authentication is a technique used to prevent unauthorized access to an account or device. Once you have 2FA enabled on your device, hackers will not be able to access your accounts even if they have the login details.

2FA provides a second layer of security. If you have this feature enabled, anyone who tries to access your account  will have to bypass a verification test even if they have the right password.  The second verification test is usually in the form of a code that’s sent to your registered mobile number or email.

Even if someone has installed a keylogger on your device, the person will only be able to know your email and password and not the code until you type it. Since these codes become useless in a few minutes, the risk of getting hacked dramatically reduces.

2FA can help you detect the presence of a keylogger. If you get a code without trying to login, then it means someone’s trying to access your account.

Search for the Cydia app

If you find apps that you never installed on your device, then it might be an indication of a compromised phone. The presence of Cydia is a significant sign. It’s a package manager used to jailbreak your iOS device.

The problem with the Cydia app is that it can remain hidden on the device. You might not be able to unhide a keylogger, but you can try to unhide Cydia by going to Safari and opening “Cydia://”.

Install Oversight

Oversight was is developed to notify you whenever the camera on your device turns on. This is important because hackers can hack your camera remotely and keep an eye on your surroundings. Such instances are not typical and can result in the invasion of privacy and other such issues.

oversight app

Some experts argue that placing tape over the camera is the best option to stay protected, but it might not be a feasible choice.

Installing Oversight and other such apps can do the trick. It will let you know if there’s a keylogger or spyware on your device. You can then take steps to get rid of such tools.

Check for available Space

Keyloggers do not take a lot of space, yet paying attention to this factor can help you figure out if a keylogger is installed on your device.

To check storage:

  • Go to Settings

iphone software update 1

  • Click on General

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  • Choose iPhone Storage

iphone storage

  • The screen will display used and unused space. You will be able to see most of the installed apps.

iphone storage 2

Keyloggers may not appear here since they work in stealth, but you might be able to detect one by paying attention to how much space is available on your device.

How to remove spyware from your iOS

Now that you know your device has been compromised, It’s time to protect your data. In addition to installing antivirus and enabling 2FA, you should:

Change Your Login Details

If someone already has access to your password and email, then make a move and change all your login details.

For additional safety, you can make a new email. Also, avoid using the same email and passwords for multiple accounts.

Update the Operating System

iOS is secure and reliable. You must, however, keep it updated to enjoy the latest security. Apple is known to release patches to protect against the latest hacks and attacks. The phone can be set to update automatically.

If not, you can perform manual updates:

  • Go to Settings

iphone software update 1

  • Select General

iphone software update 2

  • Choose Software Update

iphone software update 3

  • Download and install the latest update (if available).

iphone software update 4

Factory Reset Your Device

While it’s the last option, it might be your only choice if nothing seems to work. This option will remove all the data stored on your device, and you will get an empty device.

  • Go to Settings > General
  • Scroll down and choose Reset

reset iphone 2

  • Сhoose Reset All Settings

reset all settings 3

If resetting your device fails as well, then it’s time to get your hands on a new iPhone.


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  • Tracie

    I am being hacked unmercifully. Hacked every account to include PayPal. Knows my doctor information for all of my licensure. Stole manuscripts for my books and my book covers. I am on administrative leave from work because they got into my work computer. Rigged my phone so that if I call the credit bureaus their number pops up as the contact information. Has my email going to an account that they locked me out of. Hacked into my payroll account. It goes on and on. Now they have moved to my husband. I don’t know what to do. When I close an account they open it back up. Bypassed all of by 2fa and biometrics to include my face/iris. I am at a loss

    • Anjelica

      Hey Tracie, have you tried doing the following?
      1) reinstall your operating system on your computer;
      2) factory reset your phone;
      3) create new accounts (iCloud, Google, whatever, … all of them);
      4) install an anti-virus and a firewall on your computer;
      5) install an anti-virus on your phone;
      6) change your secret questions for ALL of your accounts, write it down on a paper in case your forget and hide it somewhere safe, do not store it digitally;
      7) generate strong passwords with numbers, letters, special symbols and caps of about 12-15 characters;
      8) use 2FA.

      This is bulletproof. No way on earth anyone will be able to get to you then 🙂

  • Beta

    Same issues.

    It’s irresponsible and immoral to create apps specifically intended for malicious use. The developers should be held legally responsible for damages.

  • Suzette shipman

    Yes I was hacked deplorable during a divorce. He disabled car thru an app or from his phone. Tried to set me up for numerous things through geofencing and gps. Then he used words from search bar as testimony in a trial. Tortured me 24 hours with families help and the law refused to help. He tore up a couple phones by locking them n burning them p some way. He put me on emails that he used like family locator. He was in WiFi cause jumped on each device. Is there any evidence anywhere. Please help me get this stopped.

    • Anjelica

      You have to talk to a lawyer about this.

      • Jullie Wright

        My ex husband is doing something similar to his new soon to be ex wife. She says things keep disappearing from her from her phone, like pictures of proof that he was cheating keep getting removed. She has a new phone. What should I advise her to do? I’ve told her to change her passwords to EVERYTHING. Get new email addresses. That’s all I can think off.

        • Anjelica

          Install anti-spying software and/or an anti-virus, if it’s an Android, activate Google Play Protect. Make sure her iCloud/Google Play info (password + secret question) is changed and also don’t forget to activate 2FA Authentication.