Almost all Android smartphones released by Samsung and other giant handset makers are integrated with advanced security features. Some of them are already automatically activated by the installed Android system. There are also USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) codes or secret codes that allow you to access your Android phone’s features, especially the security and safety functions, without the need of going through your settings. Let’s take a look at the best Android security codes.
- What Are USSD Codes?
- How to Use USSD Secret Codes on Android
- 1. View the Phone's IMEI
- 2. Check SAR Level
- 3. Perform GPS System Test
- 4. Do a Touchscreen Test
- 5. Test Wi-Fi
- 6. Enable General Test Mode
- 7. Enable Service Mode
- 8. Display Calendar Storage Data
- 9. View Smartphone Battery, WLAN, and Other Info
- 10. View Firmware Information
- 11. Turn Off Caller ID
- 12. Enable Call Waiting
- 13. Check Call Forwarding
- 14. View Camera Information
- 15. Check Storage and System Details
- 16. Display MAC Address
- 17. View Google Play Services Info
- 18. View Local Network Information
- 19. Find Out the SMS Message Center Number
- 20. Shut Down Your Device
- 21. Perform Factory Reset
- 22. Reinstall Firmware
- Other Essential Android Secret Codes You Can Use
- Frequently Asked Questions
What Are USSD Codes?
USSD codes are also referred to as feature codes, secret codes, or quick codes. These codes let you access Android phone features using combinations of numbers and symbols.
Android’s quick codes are used by GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) smartphones, allowing them to communicate with your mobile network operator. They are specifically programmed into your SIM card or mobile number so that you can use your Android smartphone easier and efficiently.
However, select USSD codes may not always work on some devices. For instance, dual SIM phones usually receive errors. You may also have trouble getting them to run on various carriers, regions, and phone apps or if your device has issues with the SIM card. Nonetheless, the only way to know whether they work is by trying these codes.
How to Use USSD Secret Codes on Android
Using secret USSD codes on an Android phone is simpler than you think. You no longer have to visit your Android settings and look for the specific sections or features you want to access. Follow these steps to enter secret codes on Android.
- Open the Phone app on your Android device.
- From there, type the secret Android code that you want to use. It may start with an asterisk (*) or a hash (#).
- Press the “Call” button, and the secret Android USSD code will start to load. On some phones, you may not need to press the “Call” button – the code will activate automatically after you press the last character.
Android Secret Security Codes You Should Try
Below you’ll find a list of some of the most useful Android security codes that you should know and use on your phone.
1. View the Phone’s IMEI
USSD code: *#06#
This secret code lets you view the IMEI number of your Android phone. Your device’s IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) is another essential unique identifier since it acts as your smartphone’s digital fingerprint.
Most of the time, IMEI codes are already printed on the back of your smartphone. However, you will need to remove the back casing if you want to see it. If you don’t know how to remove the back part of your device or simply can’t, use this code instead. Checking the IMEI information can be helpful when you are buying a secondhand phone, for example.
2. Check SAR Level
USSD code: *#07#
This code lets you view the SAR level of your Android phone. Knowing the SAR (Specific Absorption Rate) level of your device allows you to learn the electromagnetic energy your body absorbs while using the Android device in question.
At the time of writing, the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) requires smartphones to have a limit of 1.6 watts per kilogram when it comes to the SAR level. Using this code, you will know if your Android smartphone already exceeds this limit. If so, it may be time to consider upgrading to a new phone.
3. Perform GPS System Test
USSD code: *#*#1472365#*#*
If you want to check the strength or efficiency of your Android GPS (Global Positioning System), use this common USSD code.
Knowing whether the GPS of your smartphone is on or off can save you in various unexpected situations, such as losing your phone or getting your device stolen. If it is active, you can use its GPS to locate your phone.
4. Do a Touchscreen Test
USSD code: *#*#2664#*#*
Just like the GPS test code, this security code lets you check whether the touchscreen of your device is working. It will come in handy when you are purchasing a used phone.
5. Test Wi-Fi
USSD code: #*#232339#*#*
Use the above code to test the Wi-Fi functionality of your Android phone. If there’s an issue with the Wi-Fi service on the phone, this code will help identify it.
6. Enable General Test Mode
USSD code: *#0*#
The best way to check whether your Android phone is working properly is by accessing or activating the “General Test Mode” features. Once you enter this code, you will be able to access various testing features, such as grip sensor, RGB testing, subkey, barcode emulator test, LED, front cam, touch testing, and device version information.
If one or two of these parameters displays issues, there’s a good chance someone is tampering with your handset.
7. Enable Service Mode
USSD code: *#*#197328640#*#*
To run different tests on your Android phone, enable the Engineering/Service/Test mode using this code. It also allows you to change some settings of your Android phone, such as network-related options.
8. Display Calendar Storage Data
USSD code: *#*#225#*#*
Your smartphone stores your calendar data, which means that your device’s storage contains the events you’ve saved to your digital calendar. By using this code, you’ll be able to see at a glance how many birthdays and other important dates you’ve saved to your calendar.
9. View Smartphone Battery, WLAN, and Other Info
USSD code: *#*#4636#*#*
Battery, WLAN (Wireless Local Area Network), and other additional phone information can be viewed using this code.
Aside from WLAN and battery status, you can also use this common USSD code to know who accesses your apps, thanks to the displayed usage statistics and Wi-Fi information.
10. View Firmware Information
USSD code: *#*#4986*2650468#*#*
Firmware information offers various benefits for Android users, such as allowing you to know whether your device’s firmware was changed, which could potentially lead to system damage.
This secret security code will allow you to bring back the key information connected to your initial Android firmware. These details include PDA (Personal Digital Assistant), RF (Radio Frequency) call date, smartphone model, hardware, and manufacturing date.
11. Turn Off Caller ID
USSD code: *31#
All Android phones now come with a native Caller ID feature. However, there are some instances when you may want to disable this identification feature and prevent others from seeing that you are calling. For such situations, use this USSD code.
If you change your mind, reactivate this identification feature by using the same USSD code.
12. Enable Call Waiting
USSD code: *43#
Use this code to enable the call waiting service for your number. The call waiting service informs you of another call you are receiving when you are already on a call. To disable the call waiting service, type #43#.
Tip: learn how to hide calls and texts from specific contacts on Android.
13. Check Call Forwarding
USSD code: *#67#
This USSD code allows you to check whether the call forwarding feature is active for your phone. If active, this code will inform you of the number calls are being forwarded to.
You can get this data even when your line is busy. You’ll also receive a notification when rejecting a call.
14. View Camera Information
USSD code: *#*#34971539#*#*
This code lets you view the camera firmware details of your phone, such as the number of cameras, maximum zoom, and firmware version.
The camera firmware can affect your system’s overall security. Actually, many malicious campaigns involve accessing smartphone cameras. Knowing your Android camera firmware’s details will allow you to identify possible tampering activities by cyber criminals.
15. Check Storage and System Details
USSD code: *#3282*727336*#
Using this code will allow you to get accurate internal system and storage information on your device. One of the details you will see is your regular data consumption. If you see that there’s unusual data usage happening on your device, then someone may be using your smartphone remotely.
16. Display MAC Address
USSD code: *#*#232338#*#*
Another way to identify malicious activity is by knowing whether your smartphone’s MAC (Media Access Control) address was changed. A MAC address is a unique identifier assigned to a network interface controller (NIC).
It is an essential component required for network protocols, such as TCP (Transmission Control Protocol). Without your MAC address, TCP will not work. This secret security code will provide you with the MAC address information.
Check whether it still matches your network. If it doesn’t, it’s better to check for some possible breaches.
17. View Google Play Services Info
USSD code: #*#426#*#
This code performs Google Play diagnostics on your phone as well as the Google Play Services information.
18. View Local Network Information
USSD code: *3001#12345#*
Interested in knowing about networks in your area? This code will help you access the “Field” mode where you will find information on cell towers and local networks.
19. Find Out the SMS Message Center Number
USSD code: 5005*7672#
A correct Message Center Number is important for your Android phone to securely send or receive SMS. You can learn your phone’s Message Center Number with the help of this code.
20. Shut Down Your Device
USSD code: *#*#7594#*#*
If for whatever reason you can’t perform a device shutdown the typical way, this secret security code is your best option.
Once you use it, it will automatically turn off your handset. When you are ready to turn it back on, you will need to enter your security passcode, preventing other individuals from accessing your device’s data. Basically, it lets you turn off your device without using the “Power” button.
21. Perform Factory Reset
USSD code: *#*#7780#*#*
There are times your handset will have bugs and other internal problems that affect your Android smartphone performance. Sometimes the best thing you can do is perform a factory reset.
Factory resetting will delete all the data from your Android device as well as installed apps. However, it will have no effect on the firmware of your device.
Since your logins and other information will be deleted, you need to make a data backup before using this USSD code.
22. Reinstall Firmware
USSD code: *2767*3855#
There are some smartphone issues that can only be fixed by reinstalling the firmware of your Android phone. Use this code to wipe your device completely and reinstall the firmware. This is like a factory reset on steroids. Again, please create a data backup before using this code.
Once you are sure that all your essential details are stored safely, use this USSD code to delete all your data, wiping your smartphone clean. Use this code only in case of emergencies.
Other Essential Android Secret Codes You Can Use
Aside from USSD codes, you may also want to try MMI (Man Machine Interface) codes. Identifying the difference between USSD codes and MMI codes is quite difficult, as both types usually start with a hashtag or asterisk.
What’s more, MMI codes are used exactly like USSD Use the dialer to type the code into your phone app. In addition, there are some features that both of them can access, such as IMEI.
Although they are very similar, USSD codes and MMI codes still have their differences. One of these is their availability. USSD codes are typically provided by smartphone carriers. USSDs differ from one wireless service provider to another (carrier-specific).
MMI codes are model-specific and will depend on the smartphone brand you are using, such as Samsung Galaxy, Google Pixel, or Oppo.
Here are a few MMI code samples that should work on most models:
- *#*#1234#*#*: view personal digital assistant software version information.
- *#*#2222#*#*: view smartphone’s hardware version.
- *#*#44336#*#*: view your current smartphone software version and system update information.
- *#7465625#: view Android device’s lock status.
- *#*#2663#*#*: view touch screen version.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do these secret codes work on iPhones?
Yes, some of these codes, such as checking the IMEI code and call waiting, will work on iPhones but not all of them. While that may be the case, make sure you are careful while testing them on an iPhone. Given the sensitive nature of the iPhone dial, you may end up disturbing some settings or even inadvertently deleting data off your phone.
Are there any other secret settings on Android phones?
Yes, you can enable developer options that will unlock extra hidden features on your Android phone. Go to “Settings → About phone → Software information.” Tap on the “Build number” seven times to activate “Developer mode.” Go back to “Settings” to find “Developer options.”
Can you uninstall all apps from your phone without deleting other data using a secret code?
No such Android secret code exists. However, there are other ways to uninstall apps without deleting personal files from your mobile.
All screenshots and images by Mehvish Mushtaq.
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