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10 best antivirus packages for your Mac

"Macs don't get viruses." If you've had a Mac long enough, you've probably already heard this line. There is only one big problem: not true. Macs get viruses. Just like PCs, they can be affected by malware, adware and spyware. And just like PCs, they must be protected with solid antivirus software. Here are ten of the best antivirus packages you can get to protect your Mac.

The best Antivirus apps for Mac OS X.

1. Symantec Norton AntiVirus for Macintosh ($ 30 for the first year, then $ 60 / year)

Norton, one of the biggest names in the world of antivirus, the performance of their software is the backdrop to their reputation: they even offer a money back guarantee that their software will keep your computer virus free. As a leading researcher in information security and malware protection, they bring many skills into play.

In April 2015, an independent antivirus software testing group called AV-TEST showed that Norton detected 100% of the tested malware samples, placing it among the most effective antivirus software for Mac. Norton's global intelligence network reports worldwide threats, helping them keep virus definitions up to date. In addition, the deluxe and premium versions of the software include parental control software is cloud backup feature .

Perhaps the most interesting factor of Symantec's antivirus software that has not slowed AV-TEST's computer during performance testing. Norton the least expensive antivirus package in terms of available system resources and the fact that it is still 100% effective makes it an easy choice for first place on this list.

2. BitDefender Antivirus for Mac ($ 40 / year)

BitDefender, like Norton, obtained a 100% detection rate in the AV-TEST comparison (although it scored 99% on another test performed by AV-Comparatives). The fact that BitDefender is constantly updating its malware definitions from the cloud, where much of the heavy work is done, means that you can be sure that almost nothing will escape your defenses.

Moving the processing to the cloud also prevents BitDefender from hogging system resources; BitDefender was the second lightest client in the AV-TEST results, slowing down the Mac a bit. BitDefender says their Mac antivirus software was specifically designed to work well with OS X, and this could be the reason it doesn't put a big problem on Mac systems.

Another important point of BitDefender that includes definitions not only for Mac-specific malware, but also for Windows-based ones, which means that you will be protected from an even wider range of threats. Combining this with the adware block, online phishing detection and the non-stop protection with AutoPilot, this is one of the best options for any Mac user.

3. Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac ($ 60 / year)

With the highest price tag on this list, you would expect Kaspersky to be the best antivirus package for Mac. And when it comes to protection, it is. AV-TEST and AV-Comparatives have both found that Kaspersky's Internet Security for Mac has detected 100% of the threats, which is not surprising, considering that Kaspersky is one of the best known groups of researchers on Internet security.

Kaspersky's antivirus package has some features that set it apart from many of its competitors, such as the block network attacks is parental control . This makes it a very versatile program that you can use to protect both your computer and your children. Provides free automatic updates, protects against PC and Linux malware and includes additional protection for your online monetary transactions .

Falling in the middle of the field, Kaspersky did not impress in the AV-TEST system's performance test (although the system slowdown would be almost imperceptible during regular use). With the level of protection it provides and the solid reputation that supports the Kaspersky name, however a valid choice to protect your Mac from all existing threats.

4. Comodo Antivirus for Mac (free)

Although it has not been tested in any of the two recent reference tests by AV-TEST and AV-Comparatives, Comodo has received in the past a very positive review by AV-TEST, which emphasized its negligible effect on system performance.

Automatic updates combined with drag-and-drop file scanning and easy planning make this an antivirus package that anyone can use, regardless of their level of technology. The software also includes a security level slider that allows you to easily adjust the amount of protection you receive, to adapt it to your needs.

Being a large company that provides a series of online protection measures for businesses of any size and for individual users, Comodo enjoys a solid reputation for protection and that reputation extends to its antivirus software for your Mac. Adding a minimal system usage makes this option valid for Mac users, especially if you prefer not to pay for anti-malware protection.

5. Avast Free Mac Security (free)

As one of the most popular antivirus packages for Mac, Avast has a big name to be up to. And with the AV-TEST and AV-Comparatives 100% detection rates, it has the ribs to deal with more expensive software like Norton. Avast presents its "automatic micro-data stream" as a feature that keeps your computer up to date on virus definitions and their large user base helps them keep track of which threats are emerging.

When it comes to system resources, Avast, although it is generally advertised as rather light, came in sixth place in the performance comparison of AV-TEST. Although this slowdown is probably imperceptible in everyday use, it shows that it is not possible to get the most out of free software performance. However, most users will not notice the difference, so it probably doesn't matter much.

Avast uses a cross-platform sensor network in combination with machine learning and big data analysis to ensure that virus definitions always include the latest threats. This level of protection is one of the best that can be achieved with free software, and the weak use of system resources makes Avast one of the best competitors.

6. ESET Antivirus for Mac ($ 40 / year)

With protection against malware based on Mac, PC and Linux, ESET aims to protect your Mac from a wide variety of threats, as well as preventing you from transmitting any malware you might get to other operating systems. The software also includes anti-spyware and anti-phishing modules to keep you even more secure online. And with 100% detection on the AV-Comparatives test, it does a good job that way.

One of the most interesting features of ESET that contains removable media control, which prevents unauthorized copying of private data to USB drives and other external media. It also has special integrated protections for social media so as not to divulge confidential information on Facebook or Twitter.

Although there are no test results that indicate the amount of system resources used by ESET, it includes a feature called idle scan, which allows you to automatically activate virus scans when the system is not under load. This means that ESET does its heaviest lifting when you are not trying to work or play, helping to make the computer run as smoothly as possible.

7. Avira Free Antivirus for Mac (free)

Avira protects your Mac from malware and threats based on OS X that affect PCs, providing a significant amount of coverage. AV-TEST also found that it had detected 100% of the malware it tested, putting it in good company among many other software that cost much more.

Maintenance made easy by Avira's simple planning, which lets you choose when your computer is scanned for new malware. You can set it to run on any day and at any time, which means you can run it once a week or every night, depending on how many system resources you want to use. Another advantage of using Avira is that the company offers a convenient browser extension that will help you stay safe online by alerting you when you are about to enter a suspicious website.

Unfortunately, Avira did not work very well in the task of AV-TEST system resources; dropped third from the bottom and slowed down their Mac a bit. While this could be a problem for someone, it is difficult to argue with obtaining effective antivirus software for free. Balancing the trade-off between cost and efficiency in the race can depend on your priorities.

8. AVG AntiVirus for Mac (free)

Another free option, AVG protects against three types of viruses: Mac, PC and Android based. Why worry about Android-based malware on your Mac, could you ask yourself? Because you could pass it on to someone you know. Even if you don't use an Android phone, someone could be infected if you manage to get one of these pieces of malware.

AVG has numerous easy-to-use features, such as automatic file scanning, drag-and-drop file scanning and automatic updates, so you can make sure that every file on your computer is free of malware. In the AV-Comparatives test, AVG detected 100% of the malware tested on Mac and PC, making it a solid choice for virus detection. The test team also praised the software for its simple and intuitive interface.

Although the use of AVG's system resources has not been tested, it has the reputation of being a bit of a resource pig. Without concrete data from a test, it is difficult to say, but some users have discovered that it uses two to three times more resources than a lighter client like Avast. However, the level of protection it provides hard to beat and a few free clients have an easier to use interface.

9. F-Secure Anti-Virus for PC and Mac ($ 40 / year)

Although the F-Secure price tag is not a worldwide success, you can use a single license for up to three computers; so if you're trying to get antivirus software for your entire family, choosing F-Secure could save you money. There is also a free 30-day trial so you can try it. And with AV-Comparatives' 100% Mac-based malware detection score, you can be sure that it will eliminate the malware on your computer.

An area worthy of note where F-Secure approaches PC-based malware detection. AV-Comparatives found that this software detected only 28% of PC threats, far behind most other competitors. Regardless of whether you believe that PC-based malware protection is important it could be a determining factor in deciding whether to invest in F-Secure.

Although the use of system resources by F-Secure has not been definitively tested recently, it has received a series of positive and negative results in the past. Although their website claims that the software does not slow down your computer, it is difficult to find evidence that this is the case. It might be worth taking advantage of the free trial to see how it behaves on your Mac.

10. Sophos Antivirus for Mac (free)

Sophos announces that its antivirus software can detect both old and new threats that are designed for Mac and PC and provides automatic updates that keep definitions up to date. The test results support their request, with a detection rate of 92.5% from AV-TEST and a 100% rate from AV-Comparatives. Although not as good as some of the other items, still a very solid performance.

The anti-malware strength of the Sophos Mac antivirus software comes from the fact that the technology used the same as the technology behind their business-class antivirus software. The simple interface simplifies file scanning when needed and the integrated quarantine manager allows you to make decisions about infected files.

Although the protection offered by Sophos is top notch, this protection could penalize the speed of your computer. Of the ten packages tested by AV-TEST, Sophos ranked # 9 in system performance, causing the computer to slow down considerably. Unless you make very few requests on your system, it may be better to opt for a more efficient option.

Stay safe

No matter which Mac OS X you use (OS X El Capitan, OS X Yosemite, OS X Mavericks), it is important that you are well protected. People thought that Macs didn't receive malware, but this is no longer the case, and you risk getting a lot of important data if you're not protected. Make sure you download one of these best Mac antivirus software today!