Whether or not your Macbook needs an antivirus software is a common concern that has been debated upon in the tech space over the years. The answer to this though has not remained the same. Macs are usually known to have better protection as compared to Windows PCs; however, this certainly does not make them immune to all kinds of viruses. Again, experts differ on this.
If you happen to research on the internet, you would find that most Apple users do not think that any kind of security software is necessary. This is because they have never faced a problem in spite of not installing any kind of antivirus software.
Yet, since 2017, there have been reports suggesting that Macs are not as secure as they used to be. A number of reports have suggested that Macs have become even more susceptible as compared to Windows PCs. It has also been reported that if affected by Mac malware, the Apple devices can freeze. So, do you need an antivirus for your Mac? This article aims to answer this question for you.
Do Macs really need antivirus
There are hardly any specific reasons for you to believe that the Mac may not fall victim to malware. The exploitation of devices is absolutely possible in today’s world. They are mostly done through Trojans, which need a user to install them.
Criminals always find it easier to exploit a device whose security protocol is easier to break into rather than a device that is well known for its secure walls. The security protocols of Apple devices were known to be much better as compared to those of Windows PCs. However, Windows has started becoming much more secure, with their Windows 8 and Windows 10 versions said to be the safest Windows versions that they have come out with to date. So, the declining safety of Macs has led many experts to believe that installing an antivirus is a must.
The Mac market share is about 20-30% in most developed countries. It is a known fact that Macs are considerably more expensive than Windows PCs. So obviously Mac owners are able to spend more on their Apple devices. This also makes Mac users a perfect and attractive target for criminals. This is a popular belief that makes one section of experts feel that Mac users are vulnerable.
One should keep in mind that the end-user is usually the most exploitable link. There are numerous apps that seem to promise attractive features but come with nothing but viruses and spyware. This is where your antivirus software acts as a guardian, as it will make you aware of the virus and block it from entering and damaging the system.
So, for this reason, it is always worth purchasing security software and ensuring the safety of your device. Some of the best antivirus providers are Norton, Total AV, Avira, Vipre, Bitdefender, Trend Micro, BullGuard, McAfee, and Kaspersky. Now, here’s the counterargument.
Macs really do not need antivirus
This argument is made on the basis that as per records, there has never been the need to install any kind of antivirus on a Mac. There have been testimonies from Mac users that they have used their devices for around 15 years and have never faced any kind of an issue ever. One of the reasons stated is that the Apple market share is considerably smaller than that of Windows.
Understanding this logic is quite simple: as Apple’s market share across the globe is in single figures, hackers would not really want to focus on such devices. These criminals might prefer to go after the bigger numbers and hence do not focus much on Macs as compared to Windows devices.
Another reason why cybercriminals go after Windows is that it is much simpler to hack into as compared to the Mac. The Mac OS has multiple firewalls, so even if malware enters a Mac system it will never be able to get to the core of the system. Apple has taken this even further as all the versions that came out after OS X 19.8 Mountain Lion have featured the Gatekeeper function that does not allow the users to install anything on the device apart from any software that is approved by Apple itself. The App Store includes all the apps that are approved by Apple so anything from there can be downloaded by the users with total ease. So when the question is asked — does Macbook need antivirus,there are many who say a resounding “no.”
So ultimately does your Mac need to be protected?
This completely depends on each user: if you are a user operating your Mac at your residence for non-business purposes and only for leisure, then you can choose to continue using your device without installing any kind of antivirus software; however, operating a device without the antivirus protection would always be a risk.
So, if you are still wondering if your Macbook needs antivirus, you could say the answer is a yes if you have any kind of valuable data on your system. If you simply use your Mac for leisure, you might still want to try out an antivirus just to be on the safer side. It is best to take precautions whenever you can.