I suspect malware (aka a virus) on my iPhone model 6s. I could be totally wrong. But, I hit a wall when I asked Apple, they said

  1. There is no such software
  2. The manager said he refused to research that topic
  3. there is no escalation procedure for my request

I felt like I was having a conversation decades ago. Could it be that the Apple malware is rare or non-existent (which I doubt otherwise every government agency would use the iPhone)? Or more likely, that the NSA has spyware on the iPhone, and it is a violation of law to reveal such information?

I don't want to erase my old, to-be-replace iPhone 6s which would also erase (possibly) the malware, if any.

  • 1
    You seem to be asking 2 questions: can there be malware on your phone (the answer is yes) and is there anti-virus available for iPhone (a quick search on the App Store will reveal that there are many to choose from). Then you seem to be asking about how to remove malware. But its all a little confused. I'm not sure what exactly you asked Apple, but I suspect they were a little confused, too. – schroeder Oct 13 '16 at 21:05
  • 1
    Unfortunately, this is not a tech support forum or a malware removal forum. If you suspect malware, reset the phone the factory settings, and install anti-malware apps from the App Store. – schroeder Oct 13 '16 at 21:07

The first question may be "Why do you think your phone has malware?" Bear in mind that this diagram, while not universally correct, is a good default assumption.

Assuming your phone is not jailbroken, an antivirus app would not have the necessary permissions to perform most of the tasks you would expect of such software (such as scanning installed apps, detecting malicious software in real-time, or repairing modified system files). Similarly, unless malware contained something similar to a jailbreak hack itself, it is unlikely that it could significantly interfere with the phone's operation.

The most likely impacts of malware (for non-jailbroken phones) are things like racking up high phone bills through premium calls or SMS (a common problem on Android; not sure about iOS), tracking your location, or possibly injecting browser ads or spying on browser activity. These are all things that a malicious app could potentially do (although the risk of such apps is relatively low, it is not zero). Simply uninstalling the relevant application should fix the problem.

If your phone is jailbroken, both the likelihood of malware and its potential impacts increase significantly. Detecting and removing it is likely to be more difficult as well. The best fix in that case may well be to hard reset (completely wipe) the phone.

Resetting the phone is also probably the best approach to fixing an unexplained issue that isn't caused by malware. Make sure your data is backed up first!

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.