Best Mac antivirus software of 2021

“macOS is impenetrable, so I don’t need antivirus software.” It is a common quote among macOS users, specifically the MacBook and iMac users, that discards any anti-virus software, free or paid. Apple is a tight-knit ecosystem, no doubt about that. But there are a lot of newer devices that belong to Apple than there were five years back. This surge in users means a surge in malicious code injections as well because there is a much wider audience to target. So, we advise you to get antivirus software to protect yourself and your system from the malicious hackers prevalent on the internet.

Even the M1 MacBook, Apple’s most robust line-up of security focuses laptops, is falling prey to the malware, adware, and ransomware prevalent on the internet. To help you choose the best out of the best, we have picked a few useful options for antivirus that can help you to combat and prevents your system from falling prey to the perpetrators on the internet. These antivirus softwares are as follows-

  1. Bitdefender

Bitdefender steals the spot for the best antivirus software for Mac in 2021. Bitdefender is costlier than most options of antivirus software for Mac but compensates for the heavy price tag with numerous important features. It offers adware protection to stop creeping ads from entering the system. Bitdefender is one of the few antivirus software to provide multilayer ransomware protection that can save your files from getting encrypted unnecessarily.

Bitdefender provides a browser extension as well to help prevent the malware from entering the system via the browser. It keeps a stern eye on phishing sites and prompts the users about an imminent threat. It even comes with an inbuilt VPN that can help you securely browse the web. The only flaw is that the quota is capped at 200 MB which is quite low if you even watch a few videos on the web.

Pros

Precise privacy control

Can be used on 3 devices

Scans for Windows malware

Cons

Low daily VPN quota

Lacks a firewall feature

2. Intego Mac Internet Security X9

Ignoring the weirdly long name, Intego is one of the reliable antivirus software providers for Mac for more than two decades now. It specializes in providing stellar protection to the Mac without hurting the pockets too much. The antivirus boats of a minimal user interface that is clubbed with an intelligent firewall system and a robust spyware detection module. The antivirus software puts user privacy at the top and detects any unwanted program trying to shake up the personal information.

Intego Mac Internet Security X9 has a few minor flaws that make it rank below the BitDefender antivirus software. It is heavy on the system resources and often causes a slowdown in performance. This makes Intego a slightly difficult choice over BitDefender. Intego Mac Internet Security X9 offers a 30 day trial for new users to take the antivirus software for a spin and see what it is capable of. Intego antivirus software for Mac can be used on up to 5 devices, making it a bang for buck antivirus software for Mac.

Pros

Praiseworthy firewall feature

30-day free trial

Cons

Impedes the system performance

3. Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac

Kaspersky is also a major player in the antivirus software domain and was among the first ones to identify and offer protection from ransomware attacks. Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac is focused on preventing the threats emanating from the internet. It has a strong malware protection module that offers protection against suspicious URLs, warns you of ransomware attacks, and even has a dedicated module for preventing webcam hijacking.

If you are not willing to fall prey to internet attackers, the antivirus also provides a dedicated browser to carry out sensitive tasks that contain a lot of personal information like banking, business conversations, etc. The antivirus software offers protection on up to 3 Mac devices and is fairly expensive if you compare it with the BitDefender and the Intego antivirus mentioned above.

Pros

Privacy-focused antivirus software

Prevents webcam hijacking

Provides a secure browser for the personal taka

Cons

Expensive

Allows only 3 devices per subscription

4. Norton 360 Deluxe

Norton is another reputed antivirus software maker that is fit for preventing your Mac devices from internet attackers. Unlike most antivirus software on our list, the Norton 360 Deluxe does not restrict its usage to only Mac devices. You can use the Norton 360 Deluxe on Windows, Linux, Android devices, amounting to a total of 5 devices. So, you don’t have to get a dedicated antivirus for each of the devices.

Norton 360 deluxe provides precise control over internet activities and comes with parental controls for kids. The antivirus software provides a proprietary VPN service as well, which is bundled with the software. Other nifty features included are ransomware protection, a separate password manager to generate and store passwords, and cloud backup of personal data. The only major flaw is the heavy reliance on system resources that makes it slow in the long run.

Pros

VPN service

Password manager

Cloud backup and parental control

Cons

Slows down the system performance

Expensive than BitDefender

5. Trend Micro antivirus

Trend micro antivirus is among the top-scoring antivirus suites that offer robust core virus protection. The antivirus is built for Mac but has a visible con of being limited to just one device per subscription. That can be troublesome for users with multiple Mac devices that need protection.

Trend micro antivirus pays attention to the increasing presence of virus and phishing attacks on social media platforms. Additional features include ransomware protection, files protection, webcam, and microphone highjack prevention with a detailed parental control module. The antivirus does miss out on firewall features or a dedicated browser to perform sensitive searches and tasks. It is also like the Norton antivirus in terms of negatively impacting the system performance. Trend micro offers a good package but lacks a few trivial aspects that make it rank below BitDefender and Norton antivirus software for Mac.

Pros

Email fraud detection

High privacy protection features

Cons

Limited to one device

Slows down the Mac OS in the long run

5. Clario

Clario is powered by the same security mechanism used by BitDefender with a number of other useful security features that make it a good alternative to antivirus software for Mac. Clario offers simultaneous usage on up to 6 devices that include Mac, Android, iOS devices. It doesn’t include Windows 10 as a supported operating system which is a slight letdown.

Clario offers identity theft protection, secure browsing, anti-tracking countermeasures to name a few. A major highlight is that it comes with a VPN service powered by Nord VPN, which can help to reduce the cost of a dedicated VPN for your Mac devices. Despite such useful features, the antivirus software works poorly on smartphones and handheld devices. Its application is absolutely the worst of them. Gladly, the Mac version of the software works well and can be your guardian angel against the maleficent entities on the internet. Clario is designed to be used by beginners or non-tech-savvy users and offers a clean interface that doesn’t confuse users.

Pros

Can be used on up to 6 devices

VPN service by Nord VPN

Lucid interface

Cons

Mobile application is not usable

Expensive than BitDefender despite similar features

6. Avast Premium Security

Avast is also a major player in the antivirus software genre that initially came with a free tier for windows devices. But we wouldn’t advise you to use the free trier as it offers minor protection as compared to the Avast Premium security. It available for Mac as well and comes with equal attention to outside intrusion as well. The antivirus is one of the few to identify WiFi intruder alerts so that you can block and change credentials to prevent any day leak.

Like Kaspersky, Avast Premium Security also pays attention to ransomware protection. It does so by adding an extra layer of ransomware prevention to cover all aspects including the browser, applications, and the system from a future compromise. Other noticeable features include web protection that is common among most of the antivirus software mentioned above. Avast Premium security does lack a dedicated browser for banking operations or a VPN service to offer a no-log policy. Also, the maximum number of devices is capped to 10 but the price for a single system is absurd. Avast is trying to direct the buyers to opt for the premium version even if not required.

Pros

WiFi intrusion detection

Extra attention to ransomware protection

Cons

No separate browser

No VPN bundled with the antivirus

Conclusion

In our consideration, the Bitdefender and Intego antivirus software is the best bang for buck options that cover major security aspects of Mac devices. If you want to extend it to multiple devices and even windows systems, Norton is a great option for you. Clario is quite underrated but actually is one of the few antivirus software for Mac to come with both VPN and secure browser.

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