Wait. What? There’s malware on the Mac? Since when? Well, actually, since forever, but whatever shows up on the Mac simply pales by comparison to what Windows PC sufferers have to go through to protect their computers.
Today’s malware– any kind of software that can cause you or your computer or your data any unwanted harm– is more of a mixture of viruses, spyware, adware, and anything else that causes users grief. Unfortunately, even Mac users get abused online. Fortunately, there are solutions.
Almost Free Free
A few months ago I accidentally typed in the wrong URL in Safari and found myself in The Land of the Lost, unable to get rid of a constant stream of browser window pop ups which told me my Mac had been compromised and gave me an 800-number to get it fixed. This particular malware was so bad I couldn’t close anything so the 800-number was useless.
How can you protect yourself from such problems? Dr. Safety.
Yes, it’s free, but there’s a commercial version with more features, but basically Dr. Safety– developed by Trend Micro, an online security company that’s ben around awhile and publishes a number of useful security tools.
Open up Dr. Safety, let it scan your Mac’s files.
What Dr. Safety does is much like most anti-virus apps or malware scanner utilities. It scans your Mac’s files and matches what it finds with a library of malware, looking for files that may be security risks.
Not only does Dr. Safety look for ad malware, it also scans for known viruses and other malware, and can isolate or remove files which match.
The full scan is the way to start, but Dr. Safety also works in the background so that every time you add a file, received a file, open, download, copy or modify a file, it gets scanned again.
The custom scan works quickly to check on recently added files or files connected to your Mac with an external disk drive or flash drive. You select the folder and Dr. Safety does the scan.
We live in a wicked world with everyone trying to hack your personal data, whether it’s stored on your Mac or on the bank’s computers, so a degree of paranoia might be a good thing to have.
Yes, a few. Dr. Safety is free but it’s more of a free trial because Trend Micro wants you to be sufficiently fearful that you’ll pay the annual subscription fee. Generally, the app’s reviews are OK, but remember, somebody wants your money. Dr. Safety scans your Mac’s files, and if it finds anything suspicious it tells you about it. And asks for money to clean the files from your Mac.