Do I need antivirus software on my new Mac and what security precautions should I be taking?

macOS and Mac Apps

Hey all, so I just got my first macbook yesterday, and today i download serval apps. I attempted audible but couldn't because I didn't have a palm hardware? I also download Capti Narrator to access bookshare books, I just wanted to make sure that both of these are safe, didn't bring any virus from the internet over on the download. In addition, do I nerd any antivirus software like notron on my mac. For the audible and Capti narrator download i did have to say allow downloads from anyone and just not apple aproved.



Submitted by Igna Triay on Monday, June 27, 2016

Good app for viruses is bit defender virus scanner. It's in the app store.

Submitted by Jake on Monday, June 27, 2016

In reply to by Igna Triay

With so few Mac viruses in the wild even today, there's no point running anti-virus software on the Mac side. If you dual boot Windows then the usual rules apply to your Windows installation. Macintosh malware are mostly adware programs such as MacKeeper (the most common) and would have to be installed deliberately in order to do anything harmful. The only case of OS X ransomware so far, dubbed KeyRanger, is blocked via XProtect in the operating system itself. The main use I've found for anti-malware programs on the Mac, such as Malwarebytes, are to remove stuff from others' Windows installations :).

Submitted by Dave Nason on Monday, June 27, 2016

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

Gotta say I totally disagree with @Jake. It's naive and outdated to say that you don't need security software. Sure you are at less risk than on Windows, but it is still definitely wise to protect yourself. Macs have got ever more popular and so more targeted than in the past. Personally I use one called Sophos.

Submitted by Carlos Taylor on Monday, June 27, 2016

In reply to by Jake

I personally have never bothered running antivirus software on my Mac. I know this will come as a shock to most, but I didn't run it on my Windows machine either, and I didn't have viruses. As far as the Mac is concerned, it is a much more secure system than Windows. I know that no computer is completely safe, and threats are always present, but I just don't personally feel it is necessary on my Mac.

Submitted by Kyle on Monday, June 27, 2016

An anti virus program is what is known as second level or reactionary security. while an AV wont hurt, it probably wont help much either. it is true that that macOS is a much smaller attack surface than say windows, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't protect yourself. your first level of security is your own practices. much better advice might be. double and triple check what your downloading. if you didn't go looking for it, don't download it. most malware is coming across in malformed flash adverts on web pages. get a good ad blocker. and obviously don't go to dodgy websites such as pornography, sites that offer paid stuff for free, and other similar sites. just use good judgment. the more complex a system the more wholes it may have to exploit.

It's not naive, @dave82. It's an assessment of potential threat versus potential benefit. At this point in time, the threats to Mac computers from the type of reactionary security an AV program provides do not warrant the decreased performance and potential false positives. A better security arrangement for a Mac is a top-notch ad blocker coupled with only allowing trusted web pages to run plugins. This stops the drive-by attacks without sacrificing performance and, if it's future ransomware you're worried about, AV programs are useless against that anyway. The threat landscape facing a Mac is, at this point in time, completely different than what we deal with on Windows and our tactics against it must, accordingly, be different. I deal with this stuff, day in and out, as part of my job.

Submitted by Joseph on Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Personally, I do run antivirus software on my mac I've gotten a couple of small malware things and have removed them with the help of that app, so yeah. I use malware bites.

Submitted by Saqib on Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Hi. Will and antivirus software of any kind slow down my Mac? I have switched from windows and always experienced this when I used AVG.

Submitted by Justin on Saturday, January 14, 2017

I use a combination of AV apps. I've got virus barrier plus which is my main antivirus app, and I've got bit defender, which I haven't used in years. Antivirus by max secure or whatever it is called is good. Personally, you need adware protection like malware bits, works well with VO and it really helps when you get into tight situations where you get warnings from the OS.