How to keep Spyware & Malware off Leopard?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by HiFiGuy528, Jul 28, 2008.

  1. HiFiGuy528 macrumors 68000

    HiFiGuy528

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    #1
    I am new to Mac. I've read that OS-X does not need any anti-virus program. But how do I keep my new MacBook (clean) free of Malware, Spyware and Key Loggers?

    Thanks! :)
     
  2. Sky Blue Guest

    Sky Blue

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2005
    #2
    Don't download anything silly off the Internet.
     
  3. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #3
    Simple.

    Don't install them...

    Besides the infected files you download, which will just be something you pass on -- but doesn't spread to other parts of Leopard.

    Most of the other stuff requires the user to actively infect the machine.

    aka, this site requires you to install this app, your video codecs are out of date -- please install this trojan from our site, your app is out of date -- please use our link, etc.
     
  4. NAG macrumors 68030

    NAG

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Location:
    /usr/local/apps/nag
    #4
    Basically avoid the internet's equivalent of the red light district. If you install random stuff and give your password out to everything that asks your chances of installing something bad increases.
     
  5. jroller macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    #5
    The short answer --for now at least-- is that you do not have to do anything. There is nothing out there that will affect you. (Ok, there is like one trojan that can hurt your system...IF you choose to download it and then you enter your password as you are installing it. There is nothing that will do anything without your participation.) So.. just don't install anything from sites you can't be certain is trustworthy.
     
  6. Str8edgepunker macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2001
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #6
    My recommendation would be to populate your hosts files with entries to ad sites pointing to 127.0.0.1 (Your loopback address). Here is a good web site with entries for it:

    http://www.mvps.org/winhelp2002/hosts.txt

    The file is located in /private/etc/ and the file name is hosts. Just make a return after the last entry and then copy the entries from the file right before the # where it says: #start of lines added by WinHelp2002. Then just paste it into the hosts file on your computer and save it.

    Also, you could use Firefox's Adblock extension for browser security. Alternatively, if you want to use Safari, you can buy Saft, which adds ad blocking for Safari as well as several other useful features.

    Saft is here: http://haoli.dnsalias.com/Saft/

    Hope that helps somewhat. Honestly thought, there really is nothing out there right now that could harm your system. Even if you download something, it would still ask for your password to execute the file or run anything with admin privileges. So don't worry and be happy with your new Mac!
     
  7. NAG macrumors 68030

    NAG

    Joined:
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    Location:
    /usr/local/apps/nag
    #7
    I would not recommend a novice mess with their hosts file. They could mess something up.
     
  8. HiFiGuy528 thread starter macrumors 68000

    HiFiGuy528

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    #8
    I don't think I am capable of tinkering with the Host file yet.

    Even with my Win PC, I don't download anything from entrusted source or use email links. I was worried about sites that requires you to run "active-x" to view (in IE for Win PC) and load a key logger.

    So what you guys are saying is I can visit any site and not worry about "automatic" spyware/malware/adware "pop-ups". Safari will ask for password prior to any system changes? And I don't have to worry about HTML emails that may infect my computer with Ads?

    If I install Outlook 2007 for Mac, will I open a gateway for the same problems as Windows?
     
  9. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #9
    If you bought a new Macintosh, and just started using it, you will have an administrator account. You will have a username and a password. Anything from the internet that wants to do something nasty will need your administrator password. As long as you don't type in the administrator password you are quite safe and don't run software you shouldn't, you are quite safe.

    Now a typical scenario how you can get your Mac infected: You go to some seedy website to look at dirty pictures. You get a message: "To look at all these beautiful girls, you need to install a new Quicktime Codec. Click here to download". So this is not a website that you would download anything from. Now lets say you click on "Download", and Safari asks you "are you sure you want to download this application" or something similar. You'll have to click on "yes" to get infected. The downloading is still no problem; you'd need to run that software. The first time you try to run it, MacOS X asks you: "You just downloaded this software from the Internet. Sure you want to run it?", and you have to click "Yes" again. So yes, you can get infected, but you have to try really hard and do some rather stupid things.
     
  10. HiFiGuy528 thread starter macrumors 68000

    HiFiGuy528

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    #10
    Thank you for the detailed explanation. Not that I would visit those type of sites, but it is a good example.

    So the moral of the story is not to trust the site even when they say it is a "QuickTime" requirement to run.

    If somehow my Mac is infected. How do I tell? Will I see pop-ups, slow-downs, etc.? How Do I know if there is a "key logger" on my system?
     
  11. NAG macrumors 68030

    NAG

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Location:
    /usr/local/apps/nag
    #11
    Well the quicktime "codec" that was referenced messes with your hosts file (making the above posters information about how to change the hosts file moot as any changes you make would be erased by the malware). It basically sends all your internet traffic to various adware sites and junk.

    And about active-x, active-x does not exist for OS X so there is that huge door to auto load malware like there is for PCs.

    If you're really security minded I'd recommend creating a normal user (not an admin) for everyday use. This reduces the likelihood of something bad happening.

    I also suggest you do a search of these forums. This subject is covered about 3 times a week.
     
  12. HiFiGuy528 thread starter macrumors 68000

    HiFiGuy528

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    #12
    I appreciate everyone's response to my question. I know a search on this topic may answer most if not all my questions. MacRumors Forum has been around for a long time and perhaps a search may answer everyone's questions. If everyone did that there will be no interactions and this forum will be a ghost town.

    I apologize if my questions irritates anyone.
     
  13. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #13
    If you're going to a website and all of a sudden it asks for your log-in password, that should raise a flag that something fishy--don't allow it.
     
  14. NAG macrumors 68030

    NAG

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Location:
    /usr/local/apps/nag
    #14
    It isn't irritation. It is more letting you know that this question has been answered many times already and that a search would most likely yield the answer much faster than asking and waiting for the answer to be supplied over the course of a couple days. In fact, searching before you post is encouraged as it provides you with the answer quickly.
     
  15. krogers34 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    #15
    is there some sort of software out there that could scan a file before i install it to make sure it is safe? thanks
     
  16. NAG macrumors 68030

    NAG

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Location:
    /usr/local/apps/nag
    #16
    You mean antivirus software? Yes.

    CalmAV is good.
     
  17. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Location:
    "Between the Hedges"
    #17
    That's ClamXav

    Woof, Woof - Dawg [​IMG]
     
  18. HiFiGuy528 thread starter macrumors 68000

    HiFiGuy528

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    #18
    If somehow my Mac is infected. How do I tell? Will I see pop-ups, slow-downs, etc.?

    How Do I know if there is a "key logger" on my system?
     
  19. Sky Blue Guest

    Sky Blue

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2005
    #19
    There is no Outlook for Mac, only Entourage 2008.
     
  20. Neil321 macrumors 68040

    Neil321

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2007
    Location:
    Britain, Avatar Created By Bartelby
    #20
    As the others have stated don't worry about it, as for your question i don't know the answer as i've not been stupid enough to give something permission to install that i don't trust, oops sorry that was the answer
     
  21. NAG macrumors 68030

    NAG

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Location:
    /usr/local/apps/nag
    #21
    Whoops, typed too fast there. Anyway, the link above is the only antivirus for the mac that is any good.
     

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