There is a popular opinion that Mac systems are inherently more secure than Windows. In fact, most Mac users don’t even bother to use an antivirus or anti-malware software. Objectively speaking, that opinion may or may not be true. Mainly because that depends on a variety of factors like the number of Mac users, how they use their system, how computer literate they are, etc. However, over the past few years, the threats to Mac users have been increasing, thanks to quickly spearing malware, ransomware, and adware.
- The Best Free Spyware And Malware Removal
- Best Free Spyware And Malware Removal
- Malware Removal Software For Mac Free
- Free Spyware And Malware Removal Apps For Mac Windows 10
Mar 08, 2019 If malware is preventing you from using your computer normally, then restarting your computer in safe mode should help stop the malware from running. Safe mode only starts software by Apple on login, and should prevent the malware from starting up. To restart your Mac in safe mode, press and hold the shift key while your Mac is booting. Download FREE antivirus and malware protection. Tune up your PC, Mac and Android devices for peak performance. Surf safely and privately, wherever you are. Download Malwarebytes for your computer or mobile device. Whether you need cybersecurity for your home or your business, there's a version of Malwarebytes for you. Try our free virus scan and malware removal tool, then learn how Malwarebytes Premium can protect you from ransomwar.
Use a Spyware Removal Program Many good spyware removal tools are available for free. MalwareBytes, for example, is a popular option that does a good job of removing scareware—rogue software that hijacks your computer and tries to scare you into purchasing 'protection.' Jan 13, 2019 To help ensure your computer is free and clear of spyware, it’s best to download, install, and run a spyware removal tool. Based on my multi-point testing criteria, here are the 10 best free spyware removal tools currently available for Windows, Mac, and Android devices. 10 best free spyware removal.
Read: Best Malware Removal Tools For Windows
I bet you might have seen ads on websites (mostly porn sites), telling you to clean your Mac with MacKeeper. And while it’s legitimate software (as in not a virus), but it’s nonetheless useless and a waste of resources. Also, uninstalling MacKeeper isn’t easy as well. So, no matter what you do, avoid MacKeeper at any cost.
Instead, it is essential that you use a good anti-malware software so that not only you can be safe but also avoid spreading malware, ransomware, and viruses to other users. Here are some of the best anti-malware software for mac.
Read: How I Removed Malware From my WordPress Site
Best Anti Malware for Mac
When it comes to dealing with malware and other nasty stuff like rootkits, there is no other software that more popular than Malwarebytes. Other than it being able to remove malware from Mac effectively, the best thing about Malwarebytes is that it plays nice with your other antivirus software if you’ve already installed any. In fact, most users including me use Malwarebytes as a backup and perform weekly scans just to make sure that the system hasn’t been infected or has infected files.
To scan your system all you have to do is install the application, launch it and hit the scan button. As soon as you hit the button, it can do a quick scan for malware, PUPs (potentially unwanted programs), rootkits, adware, spyware, virus, etc., both in your system memory and hard disk. If it finds any threats, it will automatically quarantine those threats.
For in-depth scanning, select the custom scan option. Do keep in mind that the custom scan can take a couple of hours depending on the amount of data you have on your hard disk.
Download Malwarebytes (free, $40 for pro version)
2. Systweak Anti-Malware
Systweak Anti-Malware is a dedicated malware scanning and removal software for MacOS. Just like Malwarebytes, Systweak Anti-Malware scans for malware, rootkits, viruses, and adware in your hard disk and system memory. Once it finds a threat, it automatically quarantines it. If you know that Systweak Anti-Malware quarantined a false positive, you can restore the file or app with just a single click. For regular, deep, or custom scans, you can create custom schedules.
If you know a file or folder to be safe, you can exclude them from scanning avoiding any possible false positives by adding them to the exclude list. Of course, Systweak Anti-Malware always runs in the background and protects your Mac system from malware and PUPs in real-time. Other features of the software include start-up scan, memory scan, and beginner friendly user interface.
So, if you unsatisfied or looking for a good alternative for Malwarebytes you should try Systweak Anti-Malware.
Download Systweak Anti-Malware ($40)
Bitdefender is another popular software to protect your mac from various threats like malware, virus, trojans, adware, spyware, unwanted software, and much more. The best thing about Bitdefender is that apart from protecting you from regular threats, it can actively scan in multiple layers and protect your system from ransomware. Other than that, Bitdefender can also keep an eye on cross-platform threats so that you don’t unintentionally spread malware, virus, or other infected files to your friends, colleagues or family.
Since Bitdefender always runs in the background, it can block any and all threats in real-time. Of course, Bitdefender also scans your system occasionally. If needed, you can create custom schedules with various configurations and scan settings. Bitdefender also has other features like backup protection, safe files, parental controls, secure shopping protection, etc.
Simply put, if you need a full-fledged software that can do much more than blocking and removing malware then give Bitdefender a try.
Download Bitdefender ($50 – $70 according to the version you choose)
Just like Bitdefender, Avast is not just an anti-malware software, it is a anti-virus software that can scan and protect your system from a wide range of threats. In fact, if you’ve ever searched for a anti-virus software, you should have definitely heard about Avast.
Using Avast you can regularly scan your system and create your own schedules to better protect your system. Along with anti-malware security, Avast can also protect your system from infected emails, unprotect WiFi network, and ransomware. Other features of the software include real-time protection, detailed security reports, browser protection, ability to shield you from dangerous downloads and PUPs, etc.
As good as the software is, while using Avast, you should be ready for a little bit of performance dip, at least, that is my experience while using Avast. Other than that, Avast is a pretty good and reputed software to protect Mac system from online and offline threats.
Download Avast (free, $70 for pro version)
AVG is yet another popular software that can protect you from malware, viruses, trojans, adware, and other threats. The good thing about AVG is that you can scan your system for threats related to Mac, Windows, and Android so that you don’t spread viruses or malware to other systems. Also, thanks to the simple and minimal design, using AVG to scan or create scanning schedules is pretty easy and straightforward. Moreover, unlike Avast, AVG always runs in the background and provides real-time protection for free.
As good as it is, when you try to download AVG from the official site, you will be redirected to the CNET website. So, be careful while installing it on your system as CNET has a habit of bundling adware and other toolbars along with the software you are trying to install.
If you are looking for all-around protection with real-time threat analysis and blocking then you should go with AVG.
Download AVG (free)
6. Sophos Home
Another popular opinion amongst Mac users which is more than just an Anti-Malware. Sophos Home comes with a bunch of extra features including a live chat support.
Sophos offers features like Anti-virus and ransomware security along with anti-malware protection. The programme also lets you remotely manage your devices. Yes ‘Device(s)’, Sophos home can be used in up to 10 devices for the paid version and 3 devices for the free version. Doesn’t end here, Sophos Home also lets you put on parental controls so that none of your devices reach the unprotected side of Web.
Download Sophos Home (30 day trial, $27 yearly for premium)
Wrapping Up: Best Anti Malware for Mac
If you are looking for a dedicated anti-malware software that plays well with other antivirus and firewall software then go with Malwarebytes. As a premium option, you can also try Systweak Anti-Malware. If you are looking for a full-fledged anti-virus software that can extend the protection to viruses, adware, ransomware, and other threats then go with AVG as it provides real-time protection for free. You can also try Bitdefender.
In general, if you know what you are doing on the Internet and don’t download the cracked software or porn, you’ll probably don’t need an anti-virus and/or anti-malware software. That said, if you don’t consider yourself tech savvy or if you are buying a computer for your parents, it’s a good idea to have an anti-malware installed.
That’s for now. If you think I missed any of your favorite anti-malware software then command below and share it with me. It will also help other Mac users.
Read: Top 10 Free Portable Anti-Malware Software to Have on Your Pen Drive
One of the best things about macOS is that it’s incredibly secure and gets far fewer viruses than other operating systems. However, that doesn’t mean it’s immune. There have been plenty of incidents of malware harming Macs in recent years. Thankfully, though, it’s still relatively rare for Macs to be infected with spyware and when it happens, it’s no too difficult to get rid of it.
The recent controversy over Cambridge Analytica accessing the Facebook profiles of tens of millions of users has made the importance of our private data headline news. However, while Facebook providing access to your data to third parties may be undesirable and possibly unethical, it’s not illegal. On the other hand, using spyware to access information about you is illegal in many countries.
What is spyware?
Spyware is malicious code that finds its way onto your computer and then sucks up personal data — that could be personal information about you, financial details, keystrokes, web browsing habits, or even images from your webcam.
There are four main types of spyware:
Adware is probably the most common type of spyware. It’s also the most obvious, because the information gathered by the spyware is used to display adverts or pop-up windows. It’s very frustrating and hugely inconvenient, though it’s unlikely to do real damage to you or your Mac.
This is what adware actually looks like
As you can see it executes commands to 'download offers' that a user will see on their computer.
Trojans are files that look legitimate, like software updates or movies and they’re designed to fool users into downloading them. Once you’ve done that, they will access your personal data and could do serious harm to your Mac.
3. Cookie trackers
Cookie trackers are similar to adware in that they are used to track your browsing habits and web searches. That information can then be used to display adware or for any other reason the hacker chooses.
The Best Free Spyware And Malware Removal
A keylogger is a piece of code, installed usually without the user’s knowledge or permission, that tracks what keys are pressed. By doing that, the keylogger can gain access to personal data such as usernames, passwords, credit card numbers, and other sensitive information.
How to remove spyware from Mac
Thankfully, while spyware is very annoying, and potentially damaging, it’s usually not too difficult to remove.
1. Scan your Mac with CleanMyMac X
Use a dedicated tool like CleanMyMac X to find and neutralize spyware on your Mac. CleanMyMac removes not only spyware but all other malware threats, such as ransomware, worms, and cryptocurrency miners. Therefore, when you scan your system with CleanMyMac X, you may be sure that all vulnerabilities will be identified.
Here’s how to use it:
- Download the free version of CleanMyMac and launch the app.
- Choose Malware Removal tab.
- Click Scan.
- Click Remove.
Talking about CleanMyMac X, I can't recommend its Malware Monitor feature enough. Checking your Mac in real-time, it notifies you when there is a risk of spyware infecting your machine. What it does exactly is monitor Launch Agents and other places on your Mac for any unauthorized presence. That's a bit like gatekeeper.
2. Update your Mac to the latest version
macOS has built-in tools to remove known malware, including spyware.
- Go to the Apple menu and click About this Mac.
- Click Software Update. You’ll be taken to the App Store. If you’re not running the latest version of macOS, you’ll see a software update waiting to be installed. Click Update and follow the instructions.
- If you are running the latest version of macOS and no update is available, restart your Mac. When it restarts, it will scan for known malware and remove it.
3. Check your Applications folder
Go to the Applications folder on your Mac and look for applications you don’t recognise. If you see any, you should uninstall them. However, don’t just drag them to the Trash, that won’t uninstall them properly and will leave potentially harmful files behind. Instead, use an app like CleanMyMac X to uninstall them.
CleanMyMac uninstalls applications completely, removing all traces of it from your Mac. You can download it free here. Once you’ve downloaded and installed it, do the following:
- Launch it from your Applications folder.
- Click on Uninstaller in the Utilities section.
- Scroll through the list of applications until you find the one you want to get rid of.
- Check the box next to it.
- Click Uninstall.
Best Free Spyware And Malware Removal
3. Get rid of browser extensions you don’t need
Some spyware is installed in the form of browser extensions. These are mini-programs that run alongside web browsers like Safari and Chrome and provide additional features. They can be very useful, but they can also be troublesome if they’re installed without your knowledge or permission.
Here’s how to get rid of Safari extensions you didn’t install or don’t need:
- Launch Safari.
- Click on the Safari menu and choose Preferences.
- Click on the Extensions tab and look through the list of extensions. If you see one you didn’t install or don’t want, click on it and press the Uninstall button.
- Repeat for every extension you want to uninstall.
The process is similar for Chrome.
Malware Removal Software For Mac Free
Along with browser extensions, it’s also worth getting rid of cookies you don’t want as well. And the app we’ve mentioned above, CleanMyMac X, can help you with that:
- Click on the Privacy tool.
- Click Scan.
- Click on the name of the browser whose cookies you want to delete.
- Click the drop down arrow next to Cookies.
- Check the box next to the cookies you want to get rid of.
- Click Remove.
The last resort is to restore from a backup, either Time Machine or a third party backup tool. Assuming you’ve been running a regular backup schedule, you can just choose a snapshot from just before you noticed the spyware and restore from that. You should copy any documents you created or updated since the snapshot to another storage drive or online service first.
Spyware sounds scary and it can potentially damage both you and your Mac. However, in most cases, getting rid of it is not too difficult. And with the help of CleanMyMac X it could actually be very easy.