Best Security Application for Mac OS X

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Rossagues, Sep 8, 2012.

  1. Rossagues macrumors regular

    Rossagues

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    Aug 12, 2012
    Location:
    Manchester, England
    #1
    I have just done a clean install of my machine and wish to find out which is the best software for security and virus protection on a Mac running Mountain Lion.

    Thanks,

    Ross
     
  2. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

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    #2
    My recommendation is just common sense and safe computing practices
    I wouldn't install any virus/security software personally
     
  3. simsaladimbamba

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    located
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #4
    Mountain Lion has anti-malware built-in. In addition, if you practice safe computing, you can avoid all Mac OS X malware that has ever existed in the wild.

    Macs are not immune to malware, but no true viruses exist in the wild that can run on Mac OS X, and there never have been any since it was released over 10 years ago. The only malware in the wild that can affect Mac OS X is a handful of trojans, which can be easily avoided by practicing safe computing (see below). Also, Mac OS X 10.6 and later versions have anti-malware protection built in, further reducing the need for 3rd party antivirus apps.
    1. Make sure your built-in Mac firewall is enabled in System Preferences > Security > Firewall

    2. Uncheck "Open "safe" files after downloading" in Safari > Preferences > General

    3. Disable Java in your browser (Safari, Chrome, Firefox). This will protect you from malware that exploits Java in your browser, including the recent Flashback trojan. Leave Java disabled until you visit a trusted site that requires it, then re-enable only for the duration of your visit to that site. (This is not to be confused with JavaScript, which you should leave enabled.)

    4. Change your DNS servers to OpenDNS servers by reading this.

    5. Be careful to only install software from trusted, reputable sites. Never install pirated software. If you're not sure about an app, ask in this forum before installing.

    6. Never let someone else have access to install anything on your Mac.

    7. Don't open files that you receive from unknown or untrusted sources.

    8. For added security, make sure all network, email, financial and other important passwords are long and complex, including upper and lower case letters, numbers and special characters.

    9. Always keep your Mac and application software updated. Use Software Update for your Mac software. For other software, it's safer to get updates from the developer's site or from the menu item "Check for updates", rather than installing from any notification window that pops up while you're surfing the web.
    That's all you need to do to keep your Mac completely free of any Mac OS X malware that has ever been released into the wild. While you may elect to use it, 3rd party antivirus software is not required to keep your Mac malware-free.
     
  5. charlieegan3 macrumors 68020

    charlieegan3

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    #5
    OP: are you looking for a program to securely encrypt documents too? that could be considered security software too.
     
  6. Rossagues thread starter macrumors regular

    Rossagues

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    #6
    I practice safe browsing and I have all the updates I just want something to look over me just incase I do get a Mac infection!
     
  7. SprSynJn Guest

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    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Japan
    #7
    Norton has free antivirus software on the App Store. Have you tried using that?
     
  8. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #8
    Turn Filevault on so nobody can access your data if your Mac is stolen. Put secret data into the keychain ("Keychain Access" application, use "secure notes"). Don't install apps from non-trustworthy sources.

    Important (whatever OS you use): If you give your credit card information on the internet to some company, quit the browser immediately when the transaction is over and start it again. This protects you in some cases when the company you gave that information to has been hacked.

    That's it.
     
  9. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

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    #9
    Personally, I would never recommend or install Norton on any Mac
     
  10. charlieegan3 macrumors 68020

    charlieegan3

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    #10
    Or on any PC for that matter - bigger pest than any malware i've ever had.
     
  11. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

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    #11
    Couldn't agree more and once installed you can never seem to cleanse it from your machine
     
  12. Rossagues thread starter macrumors regular

    Rossagues

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    #12
    Sophos Anti-Virus for Mac Home Edition, any good?
     
  13. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

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    #13
    I don't think it is needed at all
    If you use common sense and know what you are doing with your Admin password you are fine

    The only thing I would even consider installing would be ClamXav to avoid transmitting Windows malware
     
  14. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #14
    I recommend that you avoid using Sophos, as it could actually increase your Mac's vulnerability, as described here and here.

    No 3rd party AV app provides any protection that isn't already available by practicing safe computing, combined with the built-in anti-malware protection in Mac OS X.

    If you still want to run antivirus for some reason, ClamXav (which is free) is one of the best choices, since it isn't a resource hog, detects both Mac and Windows malware and doesn't run with elevated privileges.
     
  15. ixodes macrumors 601

    ixodes

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    #15
    In the two decades, I've been a high use Mac enthusiast, logging 100 hours per week or more, I've never had one issue with a virus, malware, or any such thing.

    It's all a matter of safe computing. No third party software needed.

    It's as simple as that.

    ----------

    I could not agree more. Avoid Norton like the plague :eek:
     
  16. Rossagues thread starter macrumors regular

    Rossagues

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    #16
    Some reviewers say it creates a new user on your mac? What does this mean?
     
  17. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #17
    I never use or recommend it, so I haven't explored that.
     
  18. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    #18
    Gawd no. Never never install Norton anything on a Mac.
     
  19. 81Tiger04 macrumors 6502

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    Aug 11, 2009
    #20
    I d/l and ran ClamXav. Am I better off trashing it (taking it from Applications, putting it in Trash, and emptying Trash)?
     
  20. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #21
    It's fine if you want to keep it. If you want to simply delete it, drag it to the Trash. If you want to remove all traces of it, the most effective method for complete app removal is manual deletion:
     
  21. 81Tiger04 macrumors 6502

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    Aug 11, 2009
    #22
    Thanks. So ClamXav is more of a personal feeling of security than a necessity?
     
  22. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #23
    Pretty much, unless you're scanning files before sending them to Windows users. Of course, Windows users should have their own antivirus protection. It's not necessary to run any 3rd party antivirus app to keep your Mac malware-free, as long as you practice safe computing, as described earlier.
     
  23. gorskiegangsta macrumors 65816

    gorskiegangsta

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    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    #24
    I would recommend against using Norton products as I've been "burned" by them more than a few times on Windows.

    As it stands, there's really no need of installing extra AV programs on your Mac, whether they'd be realtime, or on demand scanning. As others already mentioned, use common sense and exercise caution around unknown sources (i.e. emails, websites, etc..).

    One other thing I'd recommend staying away from are the various "cleaning" programs. Those are generally useless on OS X and are mostly designed to take advantage of Windows switchers' habit of cleaning/maintaining their machines to keep them running well.

    Hope that helps :)
     
  24. 81Tiger04 macrumors 6502

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    Aug 11, 2009
    #25
    If ClamXav finds an "infected file," what should I do?
     

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