Original topic:

A55 lost customizations, and new app installed

(Topic created: 06-07-2024 04:49 AM)
A Series & Other Mobile

My wife's two month old A55 lost its customizations, such as app icons organized into home screen folders by category, swipe keyboard app, font sizes, etc. It also seems to now have an app related to finding charge locations for Electric Vehicles, which we did not install.

Was it hacked?

Should I do a factory reset?



1 Reply
Honored Contributor
A Series & Other Mobile

Before you take the drastic step of a reset, do you have reason to believe that the phone could have been hacked?  Do you use any kind of security protection on the phone, such as the built in McAfee?  First, uninstall the app you did not install.  Then reboot the phone and see if the customizations return--maybe the phone got confused.  If they don't return, reboot the phone again into recovery mode and clear the cache partition and see if that helps.  If you are using security, run a scan for malware. If you are not currently using security, turn on the device security and then run a scan (or download a security app and use that).

If you do end up resetting your phone, I would suggest NOT restoring your backup and do everything from scratch if you think you've been hacked, as any backup that occurred since these things started happening will likely bring back the malware.  Before you reset, as the phone is still functional, backup your photos and important info that you may have on your phone to an SD card, USB drive or computer.  You will be able to restore selective parts of the Google sync backup (phone logs, photos, device settings, but I wouldn't restore the apps, since you can't choose them individually.  Then, unfortunately, you will have to go through the tedious process or redownloading your apps and reorganizing them.  

If the malware scanners find nothing, I don't think you will have to reset, but you will still have to reorganize and re-customize if the first steps don't work.

Keep in mind, it may not be your actual phone that was hacked but either your Samsung or Google account (which is more likely.  I would suggest changing the password for both, on a device other than the one you think is compromised. Wouldn't be a bad idea to change your banking passwords either.