Antivirus for Mac - yes or no?

  Ariel12 13:54 15 Apr 2018

Hi guys, So I finally bought my new MacBook Air after being a Windows fan for years. I'm going to use it mostly for studying and browsing. Is there anything I need in terms of antivirus? Can my Mac get viruses or be hacked like Windows if I don't install any AV?


  Forum Editor 16:04 15 Apr 2018

The mac operating system is based on Unix, and as such it is harder to exploit than Windows. Add to that the fact that there are far fewer mac machines around than PCs running Windows, and you can see why Macs are not such a tempting target.

That said, malware for Macs has increased dramatically of late - it increased by over 250% last year, and new threats already identified in the first three months of this year indicate a similar rate of development.

You should definitely get some good antivirus software on your new machine.

According to our sister site (Macworld) this would be an excellent choice.

  Ariel12 17:56 15 Apr 2018

Thanks for your help! I want to make a little research on my own and see what other antivirus I can get.. what would you recommend to pay attention to? what are the most critical parameters as a user? (again, I don't want something too expensive as I'm using my Mac only for basic stuff.. thanks!

  HondaMan 20:46 15 Apr 2018

Have a look at AVG free. It's very good.

  Forum Editor 22:55 15 Apr 2018
  Ariel12 10:37 17 Apr 2018


  mgmcc 18:01 17 Apr 2018

This has always been a bit of a contentious issue. It is generally accepted (by others far more experienced and knowledgeable than me) that there are no viruses for the Mac but there is malware. Running antivirus software can slow down the computer unnecessarily, but a program such as Malwarebytes should be run regularly to remove malware.

  Old Deuteronomy 20:39 17 Apr 2018

Don't fall into the trap of believing those people who claim there are no viruses attacking Macs. Heed the FE's advice.

  Pine Man 14:54 22 Apr 2018

magmcc is correct.

If you really must have an antivirus you would be better off getting a security suite with anti malware built in but be prepared for the AV to affect your performance.

Alternatively just get something like Ghostery/Adblock & Malwarebytes.

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