Please help as I can not pay a forensic data investigator. For a while now I suspect to being spied on my computers and cellphones.

I have two Sony xperia Z3 compact and both were acting strangely lately, so that I have factory reset them several times. I found the reset over the hardware keys Power and volume down, bringing me into recovery mode and reset from there, the safest to delete everything on the phone. If you know a better one I am eager to learn.

For some weeks now this option was gone and strangely on both phones. was not possible any more. The local Sony support could also not explain it or do anything about it and I did not want to send them into a 14 days repair.

Through internet search I found the possibility to enter into recovery mode over my PC with adb commands.

adb devices: was ok and delivered a device.

adb reboot recovery started the device and booted it without showing the options menue it usually does asking if everything should be deleted, cache emptied etc.

adb reboot bootloader error: device '(null)' not found.

Can this be a spyware preventing its own elimination? If yes, how can it be detected and instead of just delete it follow to where it reports to?

Please answer in a way that a tech-dummy understands it.

2 Answers 2


I haven't got a SEZ3 but I suggest that you try these actions

  1. Check the same on someones phone to confirm if this issue is with your phone only (it will help if they have same firmware version etc)
  2. this Post shows 3 methods for How to Enter Fastboot Mode on Sony Xperia Z3
  3. Unlock your Bootloader - Sony Official method or Bootloader Unlock/Relock/Flash firmware/CWM Recovery/Root by XDA Developer. Second option will allow you to use unlock/root/flash etc.
  4. If every thing fails then you have no option but to get it repaired by Sony (Who I think are just going to flash the phone with new firmware)

In my humble opinion I doubt that its a malware, it is a case of Sony locking down access to bootloader to access fastboot feature as @Robert Mennell suggested in his answer.

  • Thanks very much for your comment. As I am not very familiar with all terminology would appreciate if you could explain me which part of your named actions voids the warranty and which not.
    – iFran
    Oct 8, 2015 at 14:58
  • Maybe I should have mentioned that I did the procedures after having made a factory reset via settings and a second one with the OC-Companion Software from Sony. I have two SEZ3 bought in different countries at different time. Both of them do not allow the recovery mode even after I just did a factory reset. I dont think that this is coincidence.
    – iFran
    Oct 8, 2015 at 15:02

The z3 has no user accessible recovery or fastboot.

Without an unlocked boot loader, these commands will not work. You must use the official tools to access these features.

So no, there is no spyware, just a lack of information about your phone.

  • @iFran hadn't seen if you'd figured this out yet or not? Oct 9, 2015 at 21:08

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