Become a MacRumors Supporter for $50/year with no ads, ability to filter front page stories, and private forums.

BeautifulWoman_1984

Contributor
Original poster
Sep 5, 2016
470
59
Hey guys,

Sorry to be creating a thread about this, but it's an incredibly important problem I need help with!

I've done a lot of research and it seems like many MacRumors users don't run a security suite like a firewall or anti-virus for their Mac, but with Apple selling more Macs than ever there are so many malicious Apps on the internet like trojans, malware and keyloggers that are targeting MacOSX... ???

I want to install a security suite that includes a firewall and anti-virus for Macs.

There are so many options and I don't know how to choose which one... ???

Thank you so much!

EDIT:

I created a thread about a similar topic for MacOSX High Sierra, but I want to know the best security suite I can use for my new Mac running the most recent version of MacOSX.
 

Slartibart

macrumors 68020
Aug 19, 2020
2,160
2,170
Thank you for your reply Slartibart!

I did my research so I'm aware MacOSX comes with a firewall, but the premium products seem to offer much more protection?

I'm looking at this list now: https://firewallguide.com/internet-security/macintosh/
A firewall is a firewall - there might be a different in “comfort” when configuring between the included interface and. commercial frontend… I think there is no better protection from commercial available products compared to what MacOS/Apple offer internally plus e.g. ClamAV. Of course that still requires certain ”good practise” when receiving MS Word files etc. - if only to protect people on other platforms you work with.

TL;DR: IMHO there is no good commercial security suite - use the security features provided by Apple, check archives with ClamAV, don’t allow macros in MS word documents you downloaded, don’t click on email attachments you receive unexpected, do not let your browser extract downloaded archives automaticlly, be aware of the source of files.
 

phrehdd

macrumors 68040
Oct 25, 2008
3,915
1,067
Perhaps you need to do a bit of investigation. Sometimes a suite may have some parts that are top-notch and other parts that are just average.

While I see the attraction for a suite, you might want to see what items you really need to be within reasonable risk.
Firewall
Anti-Malware/virus
System settings
VPN

These all can play a big part. Firewalls can also be found in some routers that are very good or as an "appliance" which is a small piece of hardware that resides before your computers. Firewalls can do all sorts of things including whitelists, blacklists, build as you go lists etc. VPN is not a perfect means of protection but does add in most cases a partial extra level of protection, various anti-malware/virus can obviously add value yet many will not have them remain on all the time as they can eat quite a bit of resources. Many things to consider including what type of things do you typically download and what type of sites do you visit.
 

phrehdd

macrumors 68040
Oct 25, 2008
3,915
1,067
There AREN'T ANY "Mac viruses".
There have never been any discovered ... "in the wild".
"Mac virus" ...fine, let's skip the term and use the word "malware." Better? I suggest anyone interested in potential attacks on Mac computers take a look at this rather light look at some potential attacks on Macs. Btw, some "malware" are also categorized as viruses.

 

johannnn

macrumors 68020
Nov 20, 2009
2,059
2,018
Sweden
Common sense is enough for most users, regardless of platform. If you need/want a software, definitely go with Objective-See [https://objective-see.com/index.html]. They're killing it with their free softwares. You can check their blog and YouTube conference videos. I recommend BlockBlock and RansomWhere. I'm not kidding you, the best products are free in this case. Please don't buy some random antivirus software from a large developer. There are a lot of posts on the C4M forum (I'm not allowed to link to the site due to forum guidelines) where they change a single byte in a Mac virus and suddenly no Mac antivirus software will recognize it. However, BlockBlock and RansomWhere will still detect it due to their heuristic approach.
 
Last edited:

Big Bad D

macrumors 6502
Jan 3, 2007
360
296
France
Common sense is enough for most users, regardless of platform. If you need/want a software, definitely go with Objective-See [https://objective-see.com/index.html]. They're killing it with their free softwares. You can check their blog and YouTube conference videos. I recommend BlockBlock and RansomWhere. I'm not kidding you, the best products are free in this case. Please don't buy some random antivirus software from a large developer. There are a lot of posts on the C4M forum (I'm not allowed to link to the site due to forum guidelines) where they change a single byte in a Mac virus and suddenly no Mac antivirus software will recognize it. However, BlockBlock and RansomWhere will still detect it due to their heuristic approach.
Thanks for the recommendation, I had not previously come across Objective See. Definitely seems worth checking out.
 

phrehdd

macrumors 68040
Oct 25, 2008
3,915
1,067
Thanks for the recommendation, I had not previously come across Objective See. Definitely seems worth checking out.
Rather curious 'promo' for a product line that has no proper reviews on its own website. Additionally "heuristics" are certainly used by some major anti-malware makers and as well signatures. I cannot comment on those tools as being effective but then again, I would never take one person's overzealous approach to pitch them either. If they interest you, then look for some legitimate reviews (not advertorials). If I seem a bit abrupt, it is because telling people to install something on their system with little or no information that can be substantiated should never be met with tacit approval.
 

KaliYoni

macrumors 65816
Feb 19, 2016
1,022
2,273
  1. I've had three Objective-See utilities installed on my system for several years: RansomWhere?, What's Your Sign, and KnockKnock. I would happily install them on any system I own.
  2. Patrick Wardle, Objective-See's owner and developer, was well respected in a formerly very active online Mac troubleshooting community I participated in on macintouch.com .
  3. I've had the free version of Malwarebytes on my machine for a long time (another tip I got from macintouch). I recommend it.
  4. "Common sense", in my view, is driven a lot by personality traits. As such, I don't regard "common sense" as a good basis for making security and privacy decisions.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ignatius345

Big Bad D

macrumors 6502
Jan 3, 2007
360
296
France
Rather curious 'promo' for a product line that has no proper reviews on its own website. Additionally "heuristics" are certainly used by some major anti-malware makers and as well signatures. I cannot comment on those tools as being effective but then again, I would never take one person's overzealous approach to pitch them either. If they interest you, then look for some legitimate reviews (not advertorials). If I seem a bit abrupt, it is because telling people to install something on their system with little or no information that can be substantiated should never be met with tacit approval.
I provided no promo. I respond to another post.
But I still think it is interesting to check out.
 

phrehdd

macrumors 68040
Oct 25, 2008
3,915
1,067
  1. I've had three Objective-See utilities installed on my system for several years: RansomWhere?, What's Your Sign, and KnockKnock. I would happily install them on any system I own.
  2. Patrick Wardle, Objective-See's owner and developer, was well respected in a formerly very active online Mac troubleshooting community I participated in on macintouch.com .
  3. I've had the free version of Malwarebytes on my machine for a long time (another tip I got from macintouch). I recommend it.
  4. "Common sense", in my view, is driven a lot by personality traits. As such, I don't regard "common sense" as a good basis for making security and privacy decisions.
Alas shame that "common sense" is something you reject. Many people don't have common sense but usually, it's by lacking information or skills and not by blatant dismissal. Interesting.
 

avz

macrumors 65816
Oct 7, 2018
1,416
1,584
"Common sense", in my view, is driven a lot by personality traits. As such, I don't regard "common sense" as a good basis for making security and privacy decisions.
True, the same applies when giving out the financial advice.
 
  • Like
Reactions: KaliYoni

WeatherWeasel

macrumors 6502
Oct 28, 2019
283
115
Des Moines, Iowa
I have used bitdefender for a while, very low footprint. Although I wish the had that it did scheduled scans, it works for now. Perhaps things after the new MACOSX comes aboard, companies will do better.
 

BeautifulWoman_1984

Contributor
Original poster
Sep 5, 2016
470
59
Thank you for your replies!

There are so many competing security apps for MacOS that it's taking me so much time to do my research!

I'm very leery of "free" anti-virus apps as I've read of how these apps mine user information and send it back to the company offering the "free" app... ? ? ?
 
  • Like
Reactions: phrehdd

WeatherWeasel

macrumors 6502
Oct 28, 2019
283
115
Des Moines, Iowa
I would steer away from the free software as they do not have the same contents and protection as I have observed.
I too am concerned about protection, I use Bitdefender as it has a low impact on my system when scanning or running in the background. I think they could do better in trying to make there app equal to their windows version,but still not a bad situation. I have used kapersky, norton and Avast, but were turned off by their ads wanting me to add on something I don't need and how much resources they use while running.
 

chevyboy60013

macrumors 6502
Sep 18, 2021
302
116
I have never used any security software on ANY of my mac's, even though my company requires it, and even more since they expect us to work from home as much as possible. Simply put, it's my computer and no one has the authority to force any form of compliance at all with their nonsense. There are no Mac viruses.
 

retta283

Cancelled
Jun 8, 2018
2,845
2,923
Victoria, British Columbia
I have used kapersky, norton and Avast, but were turned off by their ads wanting me to add on something I don't need and how much resources they use while running.
I was an Avast user for a long time on the Windows side of things, they were generally alright for free users until about 5 years ago or so. The nagging has increased tenfold since then. I dumped them on all installs as a result of that, and their GUI was rather unstable and resource-intensive, making working with the software frustrating.

Norton was always an instant turn-off for me, when I Was doing computer repair, I would even install Microsoft security essentials over Norton if a customer was using it unless they requested I keep it. They had some good tools 30 years ago in the early Windows days, but the AV has sucked for a long time. Never used kapersky but I imagine it's much of the same as the other two.
 

WeatherWeasel

macrumors 6502
Oct 28, 2019
283
115
Des Moines, Iowa
I was an Avast user for a long time on the Windows side of things, they were generally alright for free users until about 5 years ago or so. The nagging has increased tenfold since then. I dumped them on all installs as a result of that, and their GUI was rather unstable and resource-intensive, making working with the software frustrating.

Norton was always an instant turn-off for me, when I Was doing computer repair, I would even install Microsoft security essentials over Norton if a customer was using it unless they requested I keep it. They had some good tools 30 years ago in the early Windows days, but the AV has sucked for a long time. Never used kapersky but I imagine it's much of the same as the other two.
I stopped with Kaspersky when the government took it off their computers because they are Russian company. So I did. Not a dang thing wrong, but I didn't like their non stopping ads for this and that as with Avast. Norton works, but it is tough to completely get rid of. So right now Bitdefender. My wife is a teacher and also a fan of Korean videos( it has been a tough couple of years for her being around me 24/7) so today i snagged her laptop, did a virus scan and crapware and it is oddly clean. I am satisfied that Bitdefender works well on her machine.

Let me offer you this, read on the internet, not here about each anti-virus, the comparison and then what people like about it and what people hate about it and make your choice, but do get something on board.
 

robo456

macrumors 6502
Mar 3, 2008
359
44
New Jersey
Is LittleSnitch still a thing? I remember that was really powerful for controlling inbound and outbound traffic... actually sometimes a little "too powerfull!"
 
  • Haha
Reactions: mikehalloran

phrehdd

macrumors 68040
Oct 25, 2008
3,915
1,067
I have never used any security software on ANY of my mac's, even though my company requires it, and even more since they expect us to work from home as much as possible. Simply put, it's my computer and no one has the authority to force any form of compliance at all with their nonsense. There are no Mac viruses.
Hard to tell if you are being sarcastic here or serious. - However, I have provided on MacRumors a list of some known malware that does impact MacOS. In turn, you are incorrect about not needing protection for a Mac. If your computer connects to the company, it would be wise and respectful to meet the company policy of some sort of software-based protection. The ability to pass between Windows and Mac (and in some instances Unix/Linux) is growing greater where malware is concerned. Candidly, if I was involved in IS at the company you work for, it would be expressed in the employee policy handbook that employees sign off on and also, include in the network a means to identify the protection or not let you enter into the network. I say this as someone who has years ago been involved with this type of challenge so I have a comfortable 'feel' for this type of challenge.
 
  • Like
Reactions: WeatherWeasel
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.