Macs seem to be less vulnerable to hackers’ attacks. The reason is quite simple: Macs are used by a smaller number of users than Windows and thus, this OS is less attractive for hackers.
However, it doesn’t mean that Macs are totally secure and you may rest in peace if you are a Mac addict. Macs also get infected by ransomware, Trojans, adware, they are vulnerable to password theft. In fact, experts admit that Mac malicious programs appear much more often than they predicted just several years ago.
Thus, it is not too smart to ignore safety issues even if you have been utilizing Mac for ages and never heard anything about attacks on the users like you. Moreover, you need a special type of antivirus software to defend your machine. The good news is that a lot of top antivirus providers have offers for Mac users, you just need to pick the one that fits your likes and preferences.
How to pick the best antivirus for Mac?
When choosing antivirus software for your Mac stick to the following criteria:
- Effectiveness at noticing threats. You may visit malicious websites, receive attachments with viruses, get malware through USB drive without even knowing that. Your antivirus should be able to identify threats. To find out which antivirus performs better you may refer to AV-Test results.
- Ability to neutralize a threat before it does any harm to a computer. This means that your antivirus should be able to stop malicious programs from downloading, installing, and executing. The best antivirus software can easily detect any changes in the computer’s system and take measures.
- System impact. A good antivirus should not use much of your Mac’s resources. You should be able to work normally with your antivirus operating in the background.
- Interface/ simplicity of use. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to use an antivirus. Thus, the simpler and user-friendlier it is the better.
- Extra features. In addition to protection capabilities, it won’t hurt if your antivirus has such features as parental control, anti-tracking, password manager and other.
Best Mac Antivirus Software for 2019
The majority of antivirus providers have special offers for Mac users. Usually, these are security and/or antivirus subscription plans. Sometimes additional features are also available. Below is our list of strong antivirus for Mac.
Bitdefender – best for protecting personal files
Bitdefender Antivirus for Mac is one of the top picks among Mac users. It got high scores from AV-Test and AV-Comparatives for its capability to detect threats. The company updates its software constantly to protect users from the most sophisticated attacks.
Also, the antivirus has strong features to remove malicious software without any significant influence on users’ devices; some features allow file backups. These are Bitdefender Shield, Time Machine Protection, Cross-Platform Malware Detections and a few more. Also, a VPN was added to the package not so long ago.
Bitdefender has a clear interface and it is extremely simple. In fact, the company has just improved the dashboard for Windows and promised to do the same for Macs in the nearest future.
Bitdefender Antivirus for Mac is an affordable product: a subscription for 1 device costs $39.99/year. If you want to defend up to 3 devices, be ready to pay $47.99/year and save 20% on the subscription. You may also choose to purchase a package for 2 or 3 years.
Avast – best for dealing with ransomware
Avast has been one of the market leaders for many years. Both free and premium versions perform well in detecting online threats and blocking malicious software before it starts to act. However, Security Pro for Mac gives a better ransomware defense and allows finding weak spots in users’ networks.
Avast has a simple dashboard and offers several options to scan your device. In fact, it takes about 14 minutes to conduct a full scan which is an impressive result compared to other antivirus software. AV-Comparatives named Avast the antivirus with the lowest impact on PC performance. Thus, you won’t notice it working to keep you protected in real time.
However, Avast antivirus for Mac is rather limited in terms of additional features. It offers passwords manager (both free and premium versions), VPN, and a Cleanup Pro tool. Windows users enjoy a larger variety of extras.
Note that it is one of the priciest products. Thus, if you decide to buy a package for 1 PC it will cost you $59.99/year; 3 Macs will make $69.99/year. You can also choose to protect up to 10 devices and purchase packages for 2 and 3 years.
Kaspersky Total Security – best for family protection
Kaspersky Total Security has been one of the strongest antivirus programs for many years in a row. In summer 2018, it showed the highest results in blocking known threats (AV-Comparatives) and also received the highest marks for the level of security it gives (AV-Test). It will protect your files, store and manage passwords, help you stay private.
When being active, the antivirus does not have any significant impact on users’ devices. In fact, you won’t even notice its presence.
Kaspersky Total Security has a light and convenient dashboard which shows whether your mac is safe or there are issues which require special attention. The antivirus has some useful features, for example, parental control, file backups, and password manager but their general number is less than for Windows.
This is one of the priciest security suits: you’ll have to pay $49.99/year for the package. Mind though that it covers 5 devices and thanks to cross-platform compatibility you can use it on Windows and Android along with Mac.
If all you need is basic, but rock-solid protection for 1 Mac, you can go for Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac that will only cost you $19.99.
Intego – best for protection against Mac-targeted threats
Intego has been providing security for Mac since 1997. In fact, it has several security products for Macs which is not common for other antivirus providers. However, the company does not participate in AV tests as often as their Windows counterparts. The tests Intego passed earlier showed good results in detecting viruses and Mac malware but not the ones targeted at Windows.
In general, Intego mac antivirus scans all files, emails, USB drives on your computer. It also provides solid anti-phishing protection which allows noticing unsafe emails. But there is no single word about ransomware protection in descriptions of Intego products. Also, Intego is not very rich with additional features. However, the variety of paid options countervails that well enough.
Basically, all the Intego packages are a mix of 5 components that allow for better protection of your mac: an antivirus itself, a two-way firewall, a parental control, a cleanup tool, and automatic files backup. The most expensive package, Intego Mac Premium Bundle X9 have them all. A yearly subscription for 1 Mac will cost you $69.99. If you don’t need some of the features, just pick a different package.
We should say that in terms of pricing, Intego is quite affordable. Its basic Internet Security X9, which comes with malware protection and firewall, will cost you a bit more than $39.99/year for one device, while 2-years subscription is $74.99.
Prices for both the Content Barrier and Washing Machine packages start at $59.99/year. In the first case, you’ll get a parental control feature, while with the second option the cleanup tool will be at your disposal.
You may choose to protect 3 or 5 devices to save some cash if you have several Macs to protect.
Norton Security Premium – best for multi-device protection
AV Test’s and AV-Comparatives trials results outlined that the antivirus is able to detect and stop 99 to 100 percent of online threats. Its off-line protection rate appeared lower though – 81.5% only.
Norton’s interface is easy to understand. It allows running several kinds of scans, optimizing your hard disk and making backup copies of your files.
All Norton packaged are designed to protect Macs, PCs and mobile devices. The Premium plan covers up to 10 devices and offers some valuable extras such as parental control and 25GB of safe storage for files backup. If you don’t need those additional features and a package with efficient malware protection with a firewall will do for you, Norton Security Standard package would be your best pick. Deluxe suit will ensure the same basic protection for 5 devices.
Currently, the company offers a 60% discount for its Norton Security Premium package. If you decide to subscribe for one year, it will cost you $49.99. Want to save more? Then a 2-year subscription is your potluck – get your protection for $129.99 only and save 90%.
Standard package will only cost you $34.99. The company also gives its word that it will make a refund if it fails to protect you.
Macs seem to be less vulnerable to numerous threats. In fact, many users ignore the necessity to get solid protection for their machines. Finally, a majority of antivirus providers offer an extremely limited set of protection features for Macs.
Nevertheless, Macs do need protection. Even though they are not hackers’ main target, they can be damaged seriously. In any case, it is better to be a step ahead than regret you relied on the assumption that Macs are not attractive for cybercriminals.
The good news is that it is not difficult to find an antivirus for Mac. And you don’t have to spend a fortune to defend your computer.
Take simple steps to keep your Mac safe!