What Anti-Virus and/or Firewall software do you use?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Odysee, Nov 29, 2018.

  1. Odysee macrumors regular


    May 13, 2007
    I am considering setting up a subscribe to Norton Anti Virus/Internet Security - I used to use it before when I had a Windows Machine and did like it.

    However, I don't want it to be a system hog and for it to slow my machine down, do you use any? If so what and does it slow your machine down?
  2. Chundles macrumors G4


    Jul 4, 2005
  3. SandboxGeneral Moderator emeritus


    Sep 8, 2010
    I don't use AV on all of my Macs, although I have a free license for Malwarebytes which I run on the Mac mini simply because I can. It doesn't hog any resources and isn't a nuisance either.

    As for firewall software, I don't use any. I am behind a hardware firewall, a Negate SG-3100 running pfSense open source firewall software.
  4. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    I used Norton waaaaay back in the day on System 7 I believe and it was worse than any virus I could have encountered
    I dumped it and have never looked back

    Since OSX and macOS days I haven't used anything and I don't believe it is necessary
    I run Malwarebytes (free) occasionally if I think I need to, but have never really found anything

    Common sense computing, staying away from sketchy sites and paying attention to what you install will keep you free of most malware
    Avoiding pirated software and torrents in general will also provide you protection

    Other than that, I don't use anything and don't feel the need for it at all
    (I'm not in a position of sending a lot of Office files, so I don't need to protect Windows users, but ClamXav is still the go to for that I think)
  5. Ulenspiegel, Nov 29, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2018

    Ulenspiegel macrumors 68030


    Nov 8, 2014
    Land of Flanders and Elsewhere
    NAV will slow down your machine and will cause different problems.
    MACs don't really need an AVS, nevertheless many of us here in MR use (sometimes) Malwarebytes, the free on-demand version. It means it does nothing in the background and scans your machine only when you require it.
  6. Fishrrman macrumors Pentium


    Feb 20, 2009
    The answer:
    Nothing. Nothing at all.

    There has not been a single (not one) Mac "virus" that has escaped "into the wild" since the introduction of OS X back around 2001 or so.

    MalwareBytes Anti-Malware for Mac.
    Get it here:

    It's free.
    When you run MalwareBytes, it will keep "prompting you to upgrade to the paid version".
    YOU DO NOT NEED TO DO THIS (all shouting intentional).
    It will run "in free mode" forever.

    Although there aren't any Mac "viruses", there ARE instances of Mac Malware and Adware (and other crapware).
    That's why it's useful to run MB periodically to check for them.

    It actually found something on my Mac several months' back (the very first "instance" I've had with anything in over 30 years of Mac'ing).
    MB got rid of it right away.
  7. hobowankenobi macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2015
    on the land line mr. smith.
    We use SEP at work (required), and I can say it sucks less than it used to. Used to be a bad resource hog, now not so much.

    Still would not recommend it.

    As others have stated...Macs really don't need AV most of the time. Anti-malware...sure, but not AV.

    Why do you think you want to use one?
  8. chabig macrumors 601

    Sep 6, 2002
    Don't install anti-virus at all. It's completely wrong to assume that any third party has a better knowledge of the inner nuts and bolts of the OS than the people who designed it. This mindset is a decades old carryover from the days of Win 95 and Win XP.
  9. Lunder89 macrumors 6502


    Oct 16, 2014
    Most Anti-malware software for Mac does not have pattern recognition, which means, unless the malware is in a specific form, that has already been encountered, then the malware scanner will not find it at all.

    Apples own security systems, that are built, in will protect you from anything out there, unless you go for the "5-finger-discount" or too good to be true deals, on some not so nice websites.

    A little common sense and you perfectly fine.

    I forgot which one specifically, but recently a ransomware attach actually managed to hold some Mac users for ransom, and when it was found out, all anti-malware companies was out saying the where working on a fix for it. And if I remember correctly, Apple and the developer behind the compromised app, beat the anti-malware companies to it.
    (Could have been either the Transmission or Handbrake attack... I am really not sure)

    I have 4 Macs in my life (2 at home, 2 at work), none run any kind of anti-malware software.
  10. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Macs are not immune to malware and no system is 100% secure, but no true viruses exist in the wild that can run on macOS, and there never have been any since it was released over 17 years ago. The only true malware in the wild that can affect your Mac is a handful of trojans, which can be easily avoided by being careful about what apps you install (no pirated software). 3rd party antivirus apps are not necessary to keep a Mac malware-free, as long as a user practices safe computing. In addition, some antivirus apps have themselves been used to introduce malware to Macs. In general, macOS malware is so relatively rare, that only a very small percentage of Mac users have ever encountered any.
  11. Panthera Tigris Altaica macrumors member

    Panthera Tigris Altaica

    Nov 29, 2018
    In the Frozen North, of course.
    You don't need antimalware software. There have been no significant malware threats for Macs for 20 years. If you must get antimalware software, get MalwareBytes. You won't need it.

    The best current firewall software for Macs is Little Snitch. The first few weeks that you have it installed it will drive you crazy asking about various items attempting to connect to or from your Mac. After you set up the rules properly things will settle down.

    Please do not use Norton antimalware software. It is more dangerous than any Mac malware ever seen.
  12. Red Menace macrumors 6502

    Red Menace

    May 29, 2011
    Littleton, Colorado, USA
    I use the wetware between my ears. It gets the occasional bug, but has worked without issue for many years.

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