Screen overlay detected error can be one of the most frustrating you can come across on your phone. It often appears when you’re about to dive into a new app or make a purchase in a store, and suddenly the phone stops you for what seems like an arbitrary reason. Fortunately, getting around is easy.
What is Screen Overlay Detected Error?
The screen overlay detected error usually appears as a pop-up that reads: “To change these permission settings, you must first disable screen overlay from Settings > Applications.
Although it provides you with a quick link to your device’s settings and some basic instructions on how to fix it, the solution to this issue isn’t immediately obvious, nor does it give you many details as to why it’s blocking you in the first place.
Screen overlays are a feature used by various apps to draw on top of other apps, allowing them to continue operating even if you have another app open. Think of Facebook Messenger’s chat heads, which can appear when you’re doing something else to alert you that you’ve received a message.
However, the feature can be used maliciously to hide information from a user, tricking them into accepting or paying for something they don’t want. The error message appears to ensure that the screen overlay is turned off before making important decisions about the device.
What devices are affected by the errors detected in the screen overlay?
Any device that supports screen overlays is susceptible to the screen overlay detected bug. Samsung and Lenovo devices might be some of the most common to encounter the error because they tend to be more popular, but whichever Android device you have, you are just as likely to run into the problem.
This bug has been reported to appear since at least Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. There have been changes to how it appears and how it can be fixed over the years, with Google introducing a much more streamlined system settings menu with the release of Android 8.0 Oreo, making the problem much easier to counter. .
How to fix screen overlay detected
To avoid the screen overlay detected error you need to disable the drawing overlay feature of the app that gets in the way. If you want, you can turn it back on later or leave the feature permanently disabled to avoid this problem in the future.
To do this, you will need to go to the Drawing options of your device settings. This is how you get there:
- Tap Settings , if you know where it is. If not, use your device’s built-in search feature to find it. When you find it, hit it.
- Tap the magnifying glass in the top right corner. Type “ Draw ” and tap Draw over other apps when it appears. Alternatively, or if that doesn’t work, go to Apps > Cog icon > Special Access > Draw over other apps .
- You will be presented with a list of all the apps on your device that can draw on top of other apps.
- If you suspect that you know which app is causing the screen overlay error, tap on that particular app and use the toggle to disable its ability to draw over other apps.
Some commonly problematic apps that have been found to cause the screen overlay error are Facebook Messenger, ES File Explorer, and Twilight, but there are likely many others as well.