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How to remove viruses from your iPhone or iPad

Let's face it, hackers and criminals are out to get you. Whether they're sitting in front of a PC in Russia or on their laptop next door, crooks are going to steal your information, no matter what it takes.

These days, you can be the victim of a crime and not even know it. Is someone accessing your personal information and financial records right now? Is there covert software running in the background on your iPad and iPhone? If so, it may be designed to just annoy you or worse, steal from you.

Of course, if you're an avid Apple fan, you know that Apple has created extremely secure devices. They're designed to be almost impossible to break into.

Yet, hackers have ways of infecting your iPhone and iPad. Here are some surefire signs that you're a victim of a hack. Plus, we'll give you tips to get rid of viruses and bugs from your iPhone and iPad.

App attack

If you suspect that your iPhone or iPad has a virus, don't panic. Apple has made it really difficult for hackers to get into your devices. So, instead of thinking your device is the problem, think smaller.

You may have a buggy app. Do advertisements keep popping up on your screen? Does Safari redirect you to the App Store?

If so, a hacker may have infected an app you're using. That would be good news. An app is easy to get rid of.

What problems are you having that make you think you have a virus? Whatever it is, pay attention the next time it happens. Do these annoying problems happen only when one specific app is open? It's possible an app developer may have used a development kit infected with a virus.

How to get rid of a buggy app

First, check the App Store to see if there's a newer version of your problem app. It may have fixed the problem. If that doesn't work, delete the app: From your home screen, press down on the app until all the apps start wobbling >> If there's a little X in the upper left corner of the app, touch it.

Note: To avoid problems on your iPhone or iPad, don't jailbreak it. That means you're bypassing Apple's security to download unauthorized apps. Apps that aren't in the App Store may not be scrutinized by Apple. So, you're putting your devices, your privacy and your security at risk.

Bonus: Download the FREE Komando.com app from the App Store now!

Removing viruses

If you have a virus on your iPhone or iPad, there's a very good chance your phone was infected with an app that you didn't find in the App Store. However it got there, though, you need to get rid of it.

1. Restart your iPhone or iPad: Hold down the power button until you see Slide to Power Off >> touch and slide until it turns off. To turn it back on, hold down the power button for a few seconds until you see an Apple logo.

2. Clear your history: Settings >> Safari >> Clear History and Website Data >> tap Clear.

3. Restore your iPhone or iPad to a recent backup. Make sure your device is set to automatically backup. If it is, you can restore it to an earlier backup, when you weren't having problems. To turn on Backup: Settings >> iCloud >> turn on Backup.

4. Visit an Apple Store to see if they can help remove the virus.

5. Proceed with extreme caution. If all else fails, you can wipe everything off your iPhone or iPad and start over. That means you erase everything from your smartphone or tablet, and start from scratch. To do that: Settings >> General >> Reset >> Erase All Content and Settings.

Keep your iPhone and iPad safe

It's a good thing that you now know how to get rid of buggy apps and viruses from your iPhone and iPad. But, with only a modest amount of effort, you can prevent a problem in the first place. Doing these two things will go a long way to keeping your iPhone or iPad virus-free.

1. Never jailbreak your iPhone or iPad, meaning bypass its security features, to download unauthorized apps

2. Keep your iPhone and iPad up-to-date: Settings >> General >> Software update

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