Is Google Play Services A Spy App?

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Those who use Android must be familiar with Google Play Services. It isn’t a regular app since it does not have a user interface of its own. In other words, you can’t see or interact with Google Play Services like other apps like Google Maps, Google Pay, Play Store, etc. But it is still the most important service on your Android phone.

Google Play Services has access to all the permissions on your phone which is later accessed by other apps through Google Play API. So it’s not wrong to call Google Play Services the soul of your Android phone. But since it has access to so many phone permissions and information about you, isn’t it dangerous as it can easily spy on you?

You have a point, and therefore in this article, I am going to discuss “is Google Play Service a spy app?” or “is Google Play Services safe?” To know more keep reading the article.

Table Of Contents

What Permissions Does Google Play Services Require?

can google play services spy on me

As mentioned above, Google Play Services needs lots of device permissions to work properly. You must know about all the permissions you are giving to it.  Here’s a list of all the permissions that Google Play Services require.

  • Camera
  • Contacts
  • Location
  • Calendar
  • Microphone
  • Device & app history
  • Device ID & call information
  • SMS & Phone
  • Storage & WiFi

Is Google Play Services A Spy App?

Although Google Play Services can track all your activities on your phone from location and SMS, to call logs. But you can’t call Google Play Services spyware because Google’s Privacy Policy state that:

is google play services spy app

By stating that Google claims that they use your information only for constructive purposes. They never misuse your information or sell it to a third party. Hence, you need not worry about your privacy. Moreover, if you don’t want you can even disable some permissions as per your requirement but that can stop some apps from working properly on your device.

Moreover, unlike TikTok Google has never been in news for spying on its users. Google has a clean record and hence you can easily rely on it.

What Does Google Do With Our Details?

Is Google Play Services a spy app? If not then why does Google Play Services need so many permissions and what does it do with all our personal details? You must be thinking. Here’s an answer to that.

Google Play Services isn’t a spyware, it collects your details for the following reasons.

  • To maintain & improve its services so that it keeps providing you with top-notch services.
  • The other reason it collects your personal details is to provide you with personalized services, including ads and content.
  • It may also need to collect its user data to develop new and better services.

Is Google Play Services Necessary? Can’t We Disable It?

Most of the Android apps on your phone need access to Google APIs and for that, they rely on Google Play Services. This means Google Play Services is really necessary in order for some apps to work properly. Hence, disabling Google Play Services permissions may cause apps that use Google Services such as Google Sign In, Google Maps API, location API, and Google Play Game Services to break down. These apps include Gmail, Google Maps, Google Music, and some other third-party apps.

Also, disabling Google Play Services means that you won’t be able to use Google-specific features such as Find My Device, Nearby Share, and Google Play Protect.

I don’t recommend disabling Google Play Services permissions. However, if you want you can delete all the data Google has collected about you then you can do that by following these steps.

Open Settings on your phone. Next, go to Apps  > Google Play Services.


Now, tap on Storage and then select Manage Space.

manage data

After that select Clear All Data.

clear data

With this all the data Google Play Services has collected about you will be removed including saved files, account settings and preferences, and much more.

Is There A Spy App Named Google Play Services?

Yes, some spy apps are installed with a fake name of Google Play Services. These apps include uMobix, SpyBubble Pro, Cocospy, etc. It is done in order to disguise the spyware as a system app so that the victim doesn’t get suspicious of it.

If you see an app with the name Play Services or Google Play Services installed on your phone then you should be aware of it. Because Google Play Services is not an actual app hence it does not have an icon or name that is shown on the app drawer.

Can Google Play Services Be Hacked?

Hacking Google Play Services means hacking your Android phone. Although it’s not possible to hack Google Play Services directly, there are some hidden Android spyware that can hack an Android phone easily.

These apps once installed on an Android phone, secretly monitor all its activities and sync them to the hacker’s device remotely. To explain this in simple words, Google Play Services can’t be hacked but hacking Android cell phone is quite possible.

Is Google Play Services Spying On Me? Final Verdict

Google Play Services is a safe app, it does collect a lot of your information but that is only used for making Google Services better for you. It also helps Google to enhance your experience on your Android phone. All in all, Google Play Services can track you but not necessarily for spying purposes. Moreover, if you feel unsafe in giving all the permissions then you can disable them. But I won’t recommend that because it will cease other apps on your Android from working properly.


Is It Safe To Disable Google Play Services?

No, it is not safe to disable Google Play Services as it will stop some apps from working properly and also make your device susceptible to virus and malware attacks.

Can You Uninstall Google Play Services?

No, you cannot uninstall Google Play Services.

What Does Google Play Services Do?

Google Play Services provide Google APIs to other apps that needs it.

About the Author

Ankit Prasad, an engineer driven by a passion for digital safety, founded SpyDrill to simplify cybersecurity. With a modest approach, Ankit shares insights on parental control and monitoring apps and effective protection measures. His aim is to empower users with practical knowledge, bridging the gap between technology and everyday understanding. An advocate for digital literacy, Ankit's commitment to demystifying cyber threats underscores his dedication to creating a safer online environment for all.

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