Samsung Phones Randomly Texting Photos and No One Knows Why (Update)

Got a late-model Samsung phone? Is T-Mobile your carrier? If you can answer "yes" to both, then you'd better make sure you're using a texting app other than Samsung Messages for the time being.

The Samsung Galaxy S9+. Credit: Tom's Guide

(Image credit: The Samsung Galaxy S9+. Credit: Tom's Guide)

That's because posters to Reddit and the Samsung forums say Samsung Messages is malfunctioning. One user complains of scheduled texts appearing in wrong threads or being sent prematurely, while others say their phones spontaneously sent other people random photos, or, in a few instances, the entire contents of their photo galleries.

"We are aware of the reports regarding this matter and our technical teams are looking into it," a Samsung spokesman told us. "Concerned customers are encouraged to contact us directly at 1-800-SAMSUNG."

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Additionally, Samsung told ZDNet that there weren't any "hardware or software issues found to be relevant to this particular case," adding that it continues to look into the issue.

As initially reported by Gizmodo, the problem seems to be happening on Samsung Galaxy Note 8, S9 and S9+ models that use T-Mobile as their carrier. It may be related to a recent T-Mobile profile update to the new RCS text-messaging format. T-Mobile, however, has told media outlets that the problem is not on its end, with the wireless carrier directing affected customers to contact Samsung.

The T-Mobile update seems to be occurring automatically, and many users may not realize their phones have already updated. But in all the forum threads, a solution seems to be to change to another texting app, such as the stock Android one or Textra.

If you'd rather stick with Samsung Messages, then you might want to make sure there aren't any salacious or embarrassing photos in your phone's gallery, because you never know who might receive them.

Editors' Note: This article was originally posted on July 2. we updated it at 6:17 p.m. ET on July 3 to include additional comment from Samsung and T-Mobile.

Paul Wagenseil

Paul Wagenseil is a senior editor at Tom's Guide focused on security and privacy. He has also been a dishwasher, fry cook, long-haul driver, code monkey and video editor. He's been rooting around in the information-security space for more than 15 years at, SecurityNewsDaily, TechNewsDaily and Tom's Guide, has presented talks at the ShmooCon, DerbyCon and BSides Las Vegas hacker conferences, shown up in random TV news spots and even moderated a panel discussion at the CEDIA home-technology conference. You can follow his rants on Twitter at @snd_wagenseil.