A reader whom I won’t name worries that his cousin watches what he does on his Android phone. The cousin actually told him so.
It’s possible that your cousin is just messing with your head. Ask for proof—such as texts you’ve sent and received.
On the other hand, they may actually be spying on your phone. There are a surprising number of Android apps that can do just that.
But first, let me clarify one thing: No one is tracking you via your phone’s IP address. Take your phone on a morning jog, and its IP address will change three or four times before you get home.
In order to track your phone, someone would need to install a spying app onto it. That could come in the form of malware such as the recently discovered Godless, which can be downloaded as part of a seemingly innocent app.
And then there are spyware apps that don’t pretend to be anything else; tools such as GPS Phone Tracker. And yes, you can download them from the Play Store.
Why doesn’t Google block these apps? Because they have legitimate purposes. If your employer assigns you a company phone, they have every right to see what you do with it. And parents should monitor kids’ Internet use.
Believe it or not, some people put these apps in their phones willingly. Couple Tracker allows suspicious lovers to track each other’s movements and texts.