Yes, Virgina, Macs do get viruses

Start talking about virus protection and removal, and most Mac owners tune out. “Macs don’t get viruses,” they tell you.

Maybe that was true in the 90’s (and even then only if you amended that to “Macs don’t get viruses as often”) but the times they are a-changing and today Macs are at risk of viruses as well.

Apple has provided some tools to save users the heartache and expense that a virus can cause.

Mac operating systems include built-in Malware detection software that make it less likely that you’ll download viruses. This system, known as File Quarantine or sometimes XProtect, scans every app you download to verify that it is coming from a legitimate source.

Of course, no software is perfect. Malware sometimes sneaks through the system. It is sometimes possible for a programmer of malicious software to hijack a genuine Apple developer certificate – the equivalent of passing off someone else’s driver’s license as your own.

User error can also play a role. If you bypass the File Quarantine you can unintentionally download malware onto your system.

To make sure that your Mac is as protected as possible, verify that your Mac is automatically downloading security updates and data files. Do this by opening “System Preferences,” opening the “App Store Preferences”, and clicking all the boxes under “Automatically check for updates.”

You should also run regular virus scans and malware scans to ensure that your system is clean.

If a virus does make it through your protections, contact your local Tech Support team or call Technology Solutions, Inc. at 207-368-2880.

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