Keylogger or keystroke loggers are a piece of code that can capture the keystrokes input by a user. Keyloggers can be standalone software or can be a part of a bigger spyware program used to track a user’s activity. Keyloggers are one of the oldestcyberattack tools that have been growing in popularity ever since the pandemic.
IBM X-Force researchers have discovered Hawkeye v9 keylogger infection attacks targeting many businesses around the globe. Between April and May 2019, the researchers found the HawkEye malware focused on targeting customers, infecting their devices with advanced keylogging malware that can also download additional malware.
X-Force researchers further found that there were a variety of businesses that got targeted. These included transportation and logistics, healthcare, import and export, marketing, agriculture, and others.
This software works in the background, which is why users are unaware of its activity. Users’ information typed into websites or phone apps like WhatsApp, Facebook, and Viber can be monitored by such apps.
Keyloggers are not always malicious
Contrary to popular belief, keyloggers can and do have legitimate reasons for their use. Consumers can buy such apps for several reasons, and they all serve their purpose in different scenarios and circumstances.
Some Common Keylogger for Android applications are:
- Employers can track their employees’ browsing history with the help of the keystrokes they use. Employers can utilize this data to guarantee that employees are only using resources for work and maximizing their working hours.
- Parents can ensure their kids’ online safety by monitoring their browsing history. It is to prevent kids from accessing adult websites or viewing pornographic material online.
- Employers can use it to track if their employees are not using it for company secrets or competing in the same marketplace.
- Partners or spouses suspicious of their other halves’ online activity can use keyloggers for Android to monitor their actions and check what they type or search.
- A good keylogger for the Android app will hide its activity from the user and run in the background. So, they are utilized in reconnaissance work.
- Law enforcement organizations can use keyloggers to track criminal activity on a suspected device.
- Companies can use keyloggers to gather user information and feedback for the research, development, and marketing of the products.
- Companies can use them to ensure users are not facing any technical issues while using their products or resolve them before they escalate.
- IT staff can use them to monitor illegal activity on their web servers.
Keyloggers have become sophisticated and complex
Keyloggers work in the background without the user’s knowledge. They keep logs of all the keys typed by the owner of the device. The keys you press are called keystrokes. Every keystroke sends commands to the system.
These commands can include info about the keystroke’s length, duration, time, and name of the keypress e.g. “?,” “A,” or “c”. Keystrokes are case sensitive and can include symbols, numbers, and alphabets.
Keystrokes intercepted by keyloggers are relayed to multiple devices that are then forwarded to third parties. The intercepting party can then use this information to make a profile on the user. Sophisticated Keyloggers can identify patterns and save this data onto a text file.
The keylogger app sends this file to the user who owns the keylogger software. It is different from other monitoring app features as it can track messages that were typed but never sent or messages that were sent but instantly deleted.
Most legal monitoring apps require physical access to the device you want to install them on. For this, you will need to know the device’s user name and password to unlock it and install the monitoring app of your choice onto the device.
After it is installed, the spyware will work in the background in stealth mode. It means the spyware won’t leave any traces behind to alert the device’s owner.
Android smartphones and Keyloggers are a match made in heaven
A Keylogger for Android works seamlessly and doesn’t require a person to be tech-savvy. Android is a decent operating system for making keyloggers work in harmony with the medium. Android phones have a low cost of entry and come with a variety of pre-installed apps.
It is easy for a monitoring app to get lost in the mix, so to speak, without having to spend much money.
Malicious keyloggers, on the other hand, can be activated like any malicious piece of code. They can be installed when a user opens an unknown link. They are installed when a user downloads an unknown file on a torrent network. If a user is using an old browser, or a browser that hasn’t been updated yet it can unknowingly run a web script that can install a Keylogger.
These are examples of keyloggers installed for nefarious purposes. This is different from keyloggers that are used to monitor employees, children, or spouses. These are legal monitoring apps that contain a keylogger built-in.
XNSPY app is one of the most popular monitoring apps on the market right now. It features the best mobile tracking and dependable keyloggers on this list. XNSPY can extract the keys input by the target and forward them without the user’s knowledge.
It can be advantageous when tracking employees’ browsing history or messages. The keylogger’s interception process occurs in stealth mode, and only the employer is aware of this. It is one of the reasons why XNSPY’s keylogger for Android is so reliable and popular among private companies.
• It offers several features, including phone call and text message tracking
• Can monitor all popular social media apps like Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp
• XNSPY offers free 24/7 customer support
• It is available on both Android and iOS.
• XNSPY works on both jailbreak and non-jailbreak iPhones and rooted and non-rooted Android phones.
• Has the most accurate keylogger alerts on the list.
• Live Demo lets customers try out all the features before making a purchase.
• You will need physical access to the device you want to monitor.
• No free trial to check all the features on actual use cases.
- Data may take some time to upload to XNSPY servers
Flexispy app lets customers track their activity on both smartphones and computers. Users have a wide selection of monitoring options and settings to tweak according to their personal preferences.
Flexispy’s parental control and employee monitoring are dependable in a lot of real-world scenarios. It is an ideal option for heavy users who like a plethora of features and tweaking settings.
The downside to all these features and settings is FlexiSPY’s expensive subscription model. This app isn’t ideal for the average user because of its price tag alone, making it the most costly option on the list.
• Flexible online payment system
• Available on Android, iOS, and PC
• Offers tons of features on top of its keyloggers, such as text monitoring, email tracking, and geo-monitoring.
• Not feasible for light or average users
- Users need to pay extra to get access to all the options and settings
mSpy is featured in the top best Android keylogger lists on various review websites quite often. This app offers many features and options but falls behind when it comes to value for money. mSpy costs an exorbitant amount of money. Other apps provide the same amount of control but charge way less.
So how much does mSpy cost? A one-month subscription will set you at around $48.99.
• Flexible features
• Available on Android and iOS
• Offers Live Demo of its product
• Expensive for most users
Any of these are worthy of taking the crown, depending on a user’s preference and requirements. But if you want to cover all your bases and monitoring needs, XNSPY is the clear winner.
XNSPY offers ease of use, dependability, and a ton of options in an economical package. Users get a massive amount of features and control for as low as $4 a month. It is easy to install, works in stealth mode, and can give live updates as quickly as 24 to 48 hours after installation. For these reasons, XNSPY is my choice for the best Android Keylogger of 2022.
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