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  1. #1
    Malware protection for MAC, is it necessary?
    I am a fairly new MAC user. I am running Catalina 10.15.

    I have been told my some Apple Technicians MAC OS is extremely secure and has already robust antimalware protection built-in.

    Some Apple Technicians have said it doesn't hurt to have an extra layer of protection and recommend Malwarebytes Premium edition.

    Sophos has also been recommended. Also Intego which I read that is exclusively for MAC has a very good sales pitch that their product is crucial to have.

    Any advice and thoughts would be most helpful.

    Our MAC is mainly used for online banking, our kids do homework and occasionally play a game from a website that is reputable.

  2. #2
    Malware protection for MAC, is it necessary?
    MacInWin's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum.

    Your question is going to trigger some discussion. The background is that there are NO viruses for the Mac at this time, and no known vector by which one can be written. That said, there is malware, usually found in internet pages, that can do some annoying things like hijack your browser, pop up annoying bogus warnings, etc.

    Malwarebytes can find and remove any such malware. You don't really need the "Pro" version, the free version is fine. If you go with MWB, the download will run the Pro version for a trial period, nagging you to pay. At the end of the trial, it will revert to the free version and stop nagging. The difference is that the Pro version loads at login and stays in the background, working like a Windows antivirus system to scan everything on the fly and the free version only runs when you invoke it to search for any potential malware. I don't think it's necessary to run in the background. No malware for the Mac is that disruptive that you can't run MWB after it appears to remove it.

    Another, and I think better, malware finder/killer I DetectX Swift. Does what MWB does, but I like the interface better and it has other bells and whistles.

    Avoid Sophos at all costs. Just. Say. No.

    Can't speak to Intego, but as there are no viruses, it's not going to do any real work, won't protect you from anything. All of the A/V applications are a bit like being sold protection against attack from Polar Bears in Miami. There isn't any risk, or the risk is so low as to be practically non-existent, so having any protection from polar bears is useless. I mean literally use-less. It won't get used as there are no polar bears from which to protect you. Same for viruses on the Mac.

    Just use common sense when browsing. Don't go to dodgy websites, don't click on links unless you absolutely know where it's going, don't download crapola because it's "free" and don't fall for scammers. And make frequent backups because the perversity of the Universe tends to a maximum.
    Jake

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by MacInWin View Post
    Welcome to the forum.

    Your question is going to trigger some discussion. The background is that there are NO viruses for the Mac at this time, and no known vector by which one can be written. That said, there is malware, usually found in internet pages, that can do some annoying things like hijack your browser, pop up annoying bogus warnings, etc.

    Malwarebytes can find and remove any such malware. You don't really need the "Pro" version, the free version is fine. If you go with MWB, the download will run the Pro version for a trial period, nagging you to pay. At the end of the trial, it will revert to the free version and stop nagging. The difference is that the Pro version loads at login and stays in the background, working like a Windows antivirus system to scan everything on the fly and the free version only runs when you invoke it to search for any potential malware. I don't think it's necessary to run in the background. No malware for the Mac is that disruptive that you can't run MWB after it appears to remove it.

    Another, and I think better, malware finder/killer I DetectX Swift. Does what MWB does, but I like the interface better and it has other bells and whistles.

    Avoid Sophos at all costs. Just. Say. No.

    Can't speak to Intego, but as there are no viruses, it's not going to do any real work, won't protect you from anything. All of the A/V applications are a bit like being sold protection against attack from Polar Bears in Miami. There isn't any risk, or the risk is so low as to be practically non-existent, so having any protection from polar bears is useless. I mean literally use-less. It won't get used as there are no polar bears from which to protect you. Same for viruses on the Mac.

    Just use common sense when browsing. Don't go to dodgy websites, don't click on links unless you absolutely know where it's going, don't download crapola because it's "free" and don't fall for scammers. And make frequent backups because the perversity of the Universe tends to a maximum.
    Thank you for this very helpful information.

  4. #4
    Malware protection for MAC, is it necessary?
    IWT's Avatar
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    A warm welcome to Mac-Forums, PNWmac. Thank you for your post.

    It would be fair to say, without offence, that we have seen this question more than a few times!

    1. Ignore Sophos - please!

    2. True, Intego is developed exclusively for Macs. I have used it in the past - in fact for a few years. It never found anything because so-called viruses don't exist in the wild for Macs. I will say, however, that Intego never slowed my Mac. I abandoned it some time ago.

    3. Malwarebytes is a good app for detecting Malware (as its name suggests) and that does affect the Mac; but don't go for premium or any other versions other than the free one. You will be given a 30 day free trial of the premium one, but let that lapse and after 30 days it is free.

    4. Another complimentary malware detector is DetectX Swift - free, I am almost certain although you can donate.

    5. The best advice is SAFE COMPUTING. This goes for your "kids" as well as you (maybe even more so for the kids, depending on age, but you can initiate Parental Controls via System Preferences to sort that out). Basically, avoid dodgy sites. Don't respond to or emails from someone you've never heard of and don't open attachments except from a known and trusted person.

    HTH

    Ian
    Ian

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by IWT View Post
    A warm welcome to Mac-Forums, PNWmac. Thank you for your post.

    It would be fair to say, without offence, that we have seen this question more than a few times!

    1. Ignore Sophos - please!

    2. True, Intego is developed exclusively for Macs. I have used it in the past - in fact for a few years. It never found anything because so-called viruses don't exist in the wild for Macs. I will say, however, that Intego never slowed my Mac. I abandoned it some time ago.

    3. Malwarebytes is a good app for detecting Malware (as its name suggests) and that does affect the Mac; but don't go for premium or any other versions other than the free one. You will be given a 30 day free trial of the premium one, but let that lapse and after 30 days it is free.

    4. Another complimentary malware detector is DetectX Swift - free, I am almost certain although you can donate.

    5. The best advice is SAFE COMPUTING. This goes for your "kids" as well as you (maybe even more so for the kids, depending on age, but you can initiate Parental Controls via System Preferences to sort that out). Basically, avoid dodgy sites. Don't respond to or emails from someone you've never heard of and don't open attachments except from a known and trusted person.

    HTH

    Ian
    Thank you, this is helpful.

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