Random Photos Appearing On My Phone? See How To Fix It

Timothy Iyekowa
Timothy Iyekowa - Writer & Editor
13 Min Read

You may be asking why are random photos appearing on my phone. It may occur to you as an iOS or Android user and it is sometimes surprising to see pictures you don’t know of on your device.

If you are having an issue stopping random photos from appearing on your phone, you should check the security of your iCloud and Google Photos.

Well, you should consider checking if you’ve signed into your email or an iCloud account on another device.

In this article, you’ll learn why random photos appear on your phone. You’ll also know how to fix random photos from appearing on your phone.

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What To Do When Random Photos Appear On My Phone?

The first thing you need to do when you keep seeing random photos appear on your phone is to check if you’ve signed in to your Google Account or iCloud account to another device.

This might have been what must have caused it, so to check it out you’ll have to go and see the devices you’ve previously login to and which one is active.

Then you’ll need to sign out from those devices. When you do this, you’ll no longer see random photos appearing on your phone.

If you don’t know how to see the devices you’ve previously login to, check the fixes below on the step-by-step guide. See what to do if you keep seeing photos on your iPhone or Android device.

Make sure you review your account security, check for any unknown devices and see how devices is with your Google Account and enable 2-step verification.

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Why Do I See Random Photos Appearing On My Phone?

If you are seeing random photos on your Android or iOS device, you should know several factors are causing this unusual activity on your phone.

This includes auto-downloaded pictures and videos from WhatsApp into your gallery or camera roll. It may also be a result of you singing in your iCloud or Google Account to another device.

If you sold a device without resetting it to factory defaults, and your account is still available on the device, you may see the photos available on the device.

This is if you’ve configured the Google Backup & Sync or iCloud photos backup on your phone to upload the photos to the account.

If you are using a third-party app, especially on your Android device, then it may have had access to your gallery and it is adding images that you do not know about.

Sometimes, it may be photos that you’ve saved from social media downloaded, or auto-saved from messages people have sent you, or a group you’re in.

You have your Airdrops or Bluetooth turn on, so someone just sends a photo to you, maybe. You have access to someone’s photos collection, or someone has access to your phone.

Another way you’re likely to see photos appearing on your phone is from apps. These images can be from apps that caches images for their use. Sometimes the photos come with the app you Install.

If you download a zip file and you extract it, you’ll see photos relating to the file you’ve downloaded. You’ll be able to access these images through the file manager app.

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How To Fix It When Random Photos Appearing On Your Phone

To fix random photos appearing on your phone, you’ll have to stop the auto-download images feature on WhatApp and make sure you’re not signed in to another device.

Fix 1: Disable Apps From Accessing Photos

You should disable all apps on your Android or iOS device from having access to your gallery or camera roll.

This will stop all apps including WhatsApp from auto-saving photos into your phone’s gallery. If this happens, you can prevent random photos from your device.

For iPhone: Go to Settings > Go to Privacy > Photos > Check if you see read and write near the apps > Now disable their access to your photos.

For Android: Go to Settings > Select Apps & Notifications > Permission manager > File and media > Disable apps that have access to your gallery/media/camera.

Fix 2: Remove The Unknown Image

After you disable the apps from having access to your gallery, the next thing is to delete all the random images from your camera roll.

This will enable you to know where the images come from in case you continue to see any new unknown images in your gallery again.

For iPhone: Go to Photos > In the right corner tap Select and choose the images you want to delete > toap the delete button > Then Delete photo.

For Android: Go to Google Photos/Gallery/File manager > Long press the image you want to delete > And tap on the delete icon.

Fix 3: Turn Off Auto-download On WhatsApp

The Auto-download feature on WhatsApp is a major reason why you may see random photos in your gallery.

You’ll have to turn this feature off to hinder photos from auto-downloading into your gallery from WhatsApp.

For iPhoneLaunch WhatsApp > Select Settings > Click Chats > Turn off the Save in Camera roll toggle.

For Android: Launch WhatsApp > Go to More options [three dots] > Tap Settings > Tap Storage and data > Turn off Media auto-download.

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Fix 4: Check Devices Logged Into iCloud

It may be possible that you may not be the only one having access to iCloud on your iOS device.

Therefore, you must check how many people have logged into your iCloud and have access to your photos.

Go to Settings > Tap on your profile > Check out the devices logged into your iCloud > log out devices that you do not recognize.

Fix 5: Disable Partner Sharing on Google Photos

There is a feature to enable partner sharing on Google Photos and this enables other people to upload photos into your Google Photos.

If this happens, you will receive random photos you do not know of, probably uploaded by the other person.

To disable partner sharing on the account. Go to Google Photos > Tap Settings > Tap Disable Partner Sharing.

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Fix 6: Check If Your Device Has Been Hacked

You may be seeing these random photos in your gallery because someone has access to your phone that you do not know. Your phone may be hacked.

Usually, people fall for links they see in their messages or normal message app and it is through their devices that have been hacked. It can also be that you did not reset your previous phone properly before it was sold.

If your pictures automatically save into your iCloud or Google photos and someone else is using the accounts somewhere, you will surely complain about seeing random photos in your camera roll.

You can put your iPhone into Device Firmware Update (DFU) mode to remove all viruses on the device.

Connect iPhone to computer > Open iTunes > Turn off device > Hold the power button and volume down button for 10 seconds >  Check if the device screen turns black to show DFU mode.

Fix 7: Revoke Access In Google Photos

Someone may have sent you an invite to share their gallery and you accepted without knowing very well.

This makes you share the same pictures you upload on each other’s phone and as a result, you’ll see images you do not know of.

You can revoke access and you will no longer share the same photos with the other user.

Open Google Photos > Go to Shared Albums > Tap on People > Remove other users > Turn off collaborate.

Fix 8: Check Keyboard Apps

Several keyboards have GIFs and memes that can auto-download into your gallery as you continue to use the keyboard apps and you use the GIFs and stickers they provide.

When you use these memes or stickers from the keyboard apps, they end up in your gallery and you would have no option but to delete them when you find out.

To avoid the random images completely from these keyboard apps, the best option is to delete the keyboard apps from your device and use the default keyboard of your phone.

Fix 9: Factory Reset Your Device

If you have tried all the above options and you still see unknown pictures in your gallery, the best thing to do is to factory reset your device.

This will stop all possible causes of this issue you are facing to be prevented since you are going to erase all data on the device.

This will make your device operate as if it were new and you will no longer see random photos in your gallery just like you bought it.

For iPhone: Go to Settings > Tap on General > Tap on Reset All Data

For Android: Go to Settings > Tap System > Tap Reset Options > Tap Factory Reset > Tap Erase all data.

Conclusion

The reasons why you are wondering why random photos appear on your phone may be weird but they can be resolved using the guidelines provided in this article.

You have to stop all apps from having access to your gallery. You can also delete all the random photos you see in your gallery.

Turn off auto-media download on the social media and messaging apps you use, if you’ve logged in to your Google Account or iCloud account to another device, remove the device.

The security of your Google Photos and iCloud must be properly checked to stop random photos from appearing on your phone.

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By Timothy Iyekowa Writer & Editor
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As a seasoned content writer with 4+ years of experience in consumer technology, Timothy has been a dedicated author and editor at Techvocast.com since its inception. Specializing in addressing user concerns, his articles offer effective solutions for Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac-related issues. Timothy's expertise also extends to crafting content about social media and various applications. Through his daily articles, he consistently aids users in overcoming their technology challenges.
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