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Ghost Keyboard keys appearing on springboard

robinp

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 1, 2008
543
805
I’ve been having this issue for a few months. Initially I couldn’t figure out what was going on but have observed it now for a while, I can confidently say that often when I unlock my iPhone X with FaceID, immediately after I get fantom keyboard keys appearing on the screen.

What happens is, I unlock and then tap on an app icon to open it. Instead of opening the app, I get, for a momentary flash, a keyboard key displayed on screen. It is too quick to see exactly, but I assume it is the key corresponding with that position IF the keyboard was being shown.

It only happens for a second or so after unlocking and even then, not every time, which makes it really hard to capture it. I therefore don’t have any screenshots to illustrate.

Has anyone else experienced this? I’m mildly concerned it is some kind of malware / key logger.
 

robinp

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 1, 2008
543
805
It’s a bit of a relief that at least I’m not alone! I wonder if it happens in the ios13 beta.
 
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SidBoggle

macrumors regular
Sep 30, 2007
154
58
Bucks, UK
I only have the beta on an ipad and have not noticed a problem but I have never really experienced this issue on the ipad anyway so I guess that does not prove much :)
 
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andyw715

macrumors 65816
Oct 25, 2013
1,245
667
I've only noticed this with my IPP, with the keyboard folio.
But mine just shows the top row, like the cut/copy icons, and toggle keyboard button. It's as if it loses connection with the smart keyboard, but gains it back quickly
 
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kobby2k6

macrumors member
Oct 27, 2018
61
11
Northern Virginia
Still occurring for me in iOS 12.4

The reason is for the issue is we have alphanumeric passwords for our phones. It is a bug, if you have a normal numerical password like 4 digits, the issue goes away. I am keeping the alphanumeric password personally for security reasons
 
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robinp

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 1, 2008
543
805
The reason is for the issue is we have alphanumeric passwords for our phones. It is a bug, if you have a normal numerical password like 4 digits, the issue goes away. I am keeping the alphanumeric password personally for security reasons

Thanks. I'd say that the 'reason' is because there is a bug. A work around would be to use a numeric password. Nit picking but anyway, thanks for the info.
 
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Mateo900

macrumors newbie
Nov 26, 2019
2
0
The problem was on iphone XS (many systems, many resets), and now on iPhone 11 pro.
Below similar issue:

Apple service take some data from a phone and does not help.
Finnaly I removed it in following steps:
- DFU reset - setup iPhone as a new (no apps)
- setup a new, different alphanumeric code and apple ID (by the phone)
- take the apps from AppStore without:

a) WhatsApp 

b) Messenger 

c) Nord VPN 

d) VOD cda,pl (polish VOD service to play the moovies on apple TV)
- again a new, different alphanumeric code and password to apple ID (by the phone) 


No idea if any step is obsolete, no idea which app is responsible for that.
I suposse (no time to check that) that this is a keylogger / troyan / virus (second layer under the screen - it makes phone slower)
I suposse (no time to check that) that no matter what code you choose, in case of alphanumeric it is visible, in numeric not

Let me know how it goes in your case and what you think about causes.
 
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robinp

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 1, 2008
543
805
The problem was on iphone XS (many systems, many resets), and now on iPhone 11 pro.
Below similar issue:

Apple service take some data from a phone and does not help.
Finnaly I removed it in following steps:
- DFU reset - setup iPhone as a new (no apps)
- setup a new, different alphanumeric code and apple ID (by the phone)
- take the apps from AppStore without:

a) WhatsApp 

b) Messenger 

c) Nord VPN 

d) VOD cda,pl (polish VOD service to play the moovies on apple TV)
- again a new, different alphanumeric code and password to apple ID (by the phone) 


No idea if any step is obsolete, no idea which app is responsible for that.
I suposse (no time to check that) that this is a keylogger / troyan / virus (second layer under the screen - it makes phone slower)
I suposse (no time to check that) that no matter what code you choose, in case of alphanumeric it is visible, in numeric not

Let me know how it goes in your case and what you think about causes.
Do you really think it is a key logger?
 
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Mateo900

macrumors newbie
Nov 26, 2019
2
0
There is a lot of keyloggers, they are invisible, but:
1. This is a layer under the screen like a keyboard
2. When you look at this layer you can see that it can be invisible when you use a keyboard because it looks like keyboard
3. Apple cant help
4. It starts from... ios 12? and it is continued through many upgrades
5. It starts on iphone xs and now I have iphone 11 and it is still with me
6. It starts 3-4 days after buying new phone. It starts 3-4 days after DFU reset.
7. It is rare - we have hudge community of ios (x,xs, 11) users and small ammount of cases

it can be everything - f.eg. keylogger ;)

ps
My method above was fault- it comes back after few days.
 
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C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
50,821
19,011
There is a lot of keyloggers, they are invisible, but:
1. This is a layer under the screen like a keyboard
2. When you look at this layer you can see that it can be invisible when you use a keyboard because it looks like keyboard
3. Apple cant help
4. It starts from... ios 12? and it is continued through many upgrades
5. It starts on iphone xs and now I have iphone 11 and it is still with me
6. It starts 3-4 days after buying new phone. It starts 3-4 days after DFU reset.
7. It is rare - we have hudge community of ios (x,xs, 11) users and small ammount of cases

it can be everything - f.eg. keylogger ;)

ps
My method above was fault- it comes back after few days.
None of this shows that keyloggers are actually there for iOS and are behind something like this.
 
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robinp

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 1, 2008
543
805
FWIW, the occurrence for me has dramatically reduced recently. Used to happen at least once a day. It’s now more like once a week or so
 
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