Use SMS device control for Android

Document created by asmith Employee on Mar 30, 2018Last modified by jyamada on Apr 3, 2018
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SMS Device Control is a Malwarebytes for Android Premium feature that allows you to text message commands to your Android smartphone.  We recommend turning on SMS device control in case your Android is lost, stolen, or infected with ransomware.  If your Android supports text messaging, turn on SMS device control to remotely:

  • change the device password.
  • lock your screen.
  • activate a siren.
  • show a message in your notifications.
  • receive instructions to help remove ransomware.


Instructions for SMS device control have been provided below to help you:


Turn SMS device control on or off

  1. Open Malwarebytes for Android Premium.

  2. Tap the Menu icon.

  3. Scroll down, then tap Settings.

  4. Tap Protection.

  5. Tap SMS device control.

  6. To turn SMS device control on or off, tap the switch in the upper-right corner.

  7. Malwarebytes for Android Premium may require you to enable the app as a device administrator.
    To continue, tap DO IT NOW > Activate this device admin app.
    If you do not see this window, continue to step 8.

  8. If you are turning on SMS device control, create a 6-digit PIN number, then tap OK.

    If you are turning off SMS device control, tap YES, SWITCH OFF.


Text commands to your device

If SMS device control is turned on, you can text message commands from a second (remote) device to your Android's phone number.  To test SMS device control on your Android, follow these steps. 


  1. From a second device, text mb <password> display <message> to your phone number.
    • Replace <password> with your 6-digit PIN number.
    • Replace <message> with the text you want to show in your notifications.

  2. On your Android smartphone, swipe your finger from the top-down to display your notifications.

  3. If the test is successful, the message sent from the second device (left) will appear in your notifications (right).


To see a list of other commands available, refer to the Malwarebytes for Android User Guide, Settings section.