Privacy Canada is community-supported. We may earn a commission when make a purchase through one of our links. Learn more.
Best Antivirus for Mac
Apple is a well-known brand that is used by millions of users worldwide. It has a reputation for being one of the most secure companies around.
It goes without saying that Macs are the most popular computers in the world and are used for a wide range of tasks.
It is also a very crucial piece of technology for all kinds of people, be it developers, designers, or even for those who happen to be enthusiasts.
However, there are several security issues that Mac users face, which need to be highlighted and dealt with accordingly.
To be safe while using a MAC, users must take a few concrete steps to protect their systems from viruses and malware.
That’s where antivirus comes into the picture. After all, it is one of the most important software to protect your Mac from any cyber security threats.
Considering the rise in the instances of macOS malware by over 1,100% in the last year, antivirus software becomes even more crucial today.
In absolute numbers, the number of MAC malware was going up by 1,847 daily last year.
Thus, in this best antivirus for Mac review, we will help you select the best antivirus for your Mac by comparing popular antivirus solutions available in the market.
What is Antivirus Software?
As we pointed out, antivirus software is one of the most important security tools in the modern world, amid the barrage of cybersecurity attacks today. It protects us from viruses and other malicious programs.
For example, if you browse a web page with adware or malware embedded in it, it will automatically protect you from getting infected with this program.
Antivirus programs are designed to protect your Mac from viruses. They scan and detect viruses, spyware, and other types of malware that could harm your computer.
This software detects infections as soon as they happen so that the virus can be removed.
Overall, it can be used to scan files, protect the computer against malware and prevent unauthorized access to the computer.
It is important for the user that they can trust their antivirus software because it can help them keep their computers safe from viruses, malware, and other types of threats.
Why is it Important to Use Antivirus for Macs?
A recent study revealed that Macs are more vulnerable than Windows PCs, and this can be attributed to the fact that they are not patched as often as Windows computers.
These security threats can easily sneak into your system through malicious links or downloads that you may have unknowingly downloaded from an illegitimate source when downloading untrusted third-party applications.
Thus, it is important to use antivirus software on your Mac because it can help you protect your computer from viruses, malware, and other dangerous programs or programs that can harm your computer.
A good security program will provide you with the ability to monitor your system for the presence of malware or any other security threat including hacking attempts.
Most antivirus programs detect viruses and other harmful software through the system’s scanning process.
However, you can also use a program to scan for those viruses and other harmful programs that might control your computer without your knowledge.
What’s the Best Antivirus for Macs?
When it comes to finding the ideal antivirus for your Mac, the best option depends on the exact nature of your requirements.
The additional features such as Mac-specific development, dark web monitoring, and social security number monitoring can make a difference as most of the security features stay comparable for the average user.
The number of devices that you want to use is also another important factor as buyers are likely to use an entire set of Apple devices which they need to secure.
The top three choices, as per most reviews on the internet, are Intego and Bitdefender, while McAfee and Avast are among the most well-known names in the industry.
As a rule of thumb, make sure that the one you select is affordable after the first year period ends as the prices go up significantly in many cases.
Also, you must check the compensation terms and conditions in case of any security breach with your Mac device.
We have also provided the latest price list of all Mac-oriented packages they offer to help you make the right decision for your purchase.
1. Norton Antivirus Plus – the Cream of the Crop
- Excellent customer support
- Trusted name
- Gaming-specific subscriptions
- Scans tend to be on the slower side
Norton Antivirus is one of the most popular antivirus software on Mac OS X. Rebranded as NortonLifeLock, it has a long history and a loyal user base.
Founded in 1982 with headquarters at Tempe, Arizona, NortonLifeLock has a sizable user base of over 21 million people, which makes it one of the leading solutions available in the market.
One of the best parts of using Norton is the fact that it provides you with features like a VPN and a cloud storage space of 10-500 GB, depending on the plan you choose.
Norton also provides you with a free password manager for free, making it a valuable package.
Norton Antivirus Plus Features
Norton’s SafeCam feature safeguards your privacy by preventing hacking of your webcam.
With this feature, you can be sure that you are safe and secure at home or office whether your computer’s power is turned off or not and even when there is no internet connection available.
The LifeLock feature allows you to protect your online identity, and the good thing is that it is available as standard across all the devices under its various packages.
All packages include Norton’s VPN, cloud storage, and password manager as standard.
Norton is one of the few best antivirus for Mac software providers that offer gaming-specific subscriptions to Mac users.
Norton also offers great customer support, and their subscription includes insurance of up to $100,000 to cover the legal fees and reimbursement in case of any security breach.
When it comes to pricing, Norton is one of the most affordable vendors for Mac users, and it is loved by reviewers, too, for the same reason. Let us quickly go through the various pricing options available.
- $39.99 for the first year, $84.99 for the next year
Inclusions: spyware protection, protection against ransomware, malware, and viruses. Also includes dark web monitoring, VPN, Firewall, cloud storage of 10 GB, and a password manager.
- $49.99 for the first year, $84.99 for the next year
Inclusions: Everything included in Norton 360 Standard + 50 GB cloud storage and parental controls.
- $99.48 for the first year, $149.99 from the next year onwards
Inclusions: Everything included in Norton 360 Deluxe + 100 GB cloud storage and LifeLock Identity Alert.
- $191.88 for the first year, $249.99 from the next year onwards.
Inclusions: Everything included in Norton 360 with LifeLock Select + 250 GB cloud storage, fictitious identity monitoring, court records scanning, and credit card activity alerts.
- $299.88 for the first year, $349.99 from the next year onwards.
Inclusions: Everything included in Norton 360 with LifeLock Advantage + 500 GB cloud storage 401(k) and investment activity alerts, higher reimbursements, and home title monitoring.
- $44.99 for the first year, $99.99 from the next year onwards.
Inclusions: 50 GB cloud storage, no-login VPN, password manager, and dark web monitoring alerts.
2. McAfee – Stellar Security
- Wide range of pricing tiers
- Contains a password manager
- Encrypted storage
- Strong phishing protection
- Windows features are better than Mac
McAfee is a company that is widely known for its antivirus software. It has been in the industry for over 35 years and has become a major player in the field.
Its products are used by millions of people all over the world, including best antivirus for Mac users in Canada.
The company is also very popular for its products, like Email Protection and Anti-Spam. They have several other products that are not so popular but are still being used by people.
McAfee, too, includes its VPN services and identity theft protection across all pricing tiers.
It includes a feature called McAfee Shredder that fully eliminates any remaining traces of deleted files.
They provide a money-back guarantee for malware removal under their Virus Protection Pledge.
It provides enterprise-class solutions which can be a key differentiator for corporate clients.
McAfee has a wide range of pricing tiers for its solutions, but it is recommended to understand the fact that there is an asymmetric difference between initial pricings and pricings after the completion of one year.
This may inflate your budgets all of a sudden, but the overall security features it offers make it a good choice if you choose to ignore this factor.
Have a closer look at McAfee’s Mac-oriented pricings:
- $59.99 for two years, $239.99 for the subsequent years.
Inclusions: Covers up to 10 iOS and Mac devices and McAfee’s standard antivirus protection.
Total Protection Single Device
- $49.99 for two years, $159.99 for the subsequent years.
Inclusions: Everything in McAfee Antivirus + 256-bit AES sensitive file encryption, firewall, VPN, safe web browsing, and McAfee Shredder.
Total Protection Individual & Couples
- $59.99 for two years, $199.99 for the subsequent years.
Inclusions: Everything in Total Protection Single Device but up to 5 devices + dark web monitoring and Social Security Number tracking service.
Total Protection Family
- $39.99/$119.99 for the one-year subscription, $59.99/$239.99 for the two-year subscription.
Inclusions: Everything in Total Protection Individual & Couples but up to 10 devices + parental controls.
3. Intego – Trusted Antivirus
- Free 7-day trial
- Live chat support
- User friendly
- No mobile applications
- On the pricey side compared to other best antivirus for Mac
Founded in Paris in 1997, Intego has its offices spread across Seattle, Austin, and Texas.
It was acquired in 2018 by Kape Technologies, a UK-based cybersecurity company with an international presence.
Intego antivirus solutions are designed largely for consumers, but the company also sells two enterprise-class antivirus solutions.
Every subscription package they sell is available with a multiyear billing facility and multi-device configuration options.
One of their advantages is that Intego can be used on Macs that run Windows OS through an emulator.
As far as virus protection is concerned, they provide VirusBarrier X9, which is equally effective against Windows malware (for emulator-based Mac users.)
Intego also offers network protection and parental controls through NetBarrier X9 and ContentBarrier X9.
It also provides automated file backup. Its plans cover up to three Mac/iOS devices.
Intego’s Mac Internet Security X9 plan is designed especially for Mac users and offers performance improvements.
Intego’s pricing is slightly on the higher side, but with the multiyear, multi-device options, you can expect a better overall value package.
Also, its Mac-specific antivirus is highly popular due to its performance enabling features.
However, it is positioned at a premium price range like other packages from Intego. Here’s the detailed list of Intego Mac antivirus packages.
One Year, One Device
- $39.99 for the one-year subscription, $49.99 for the subsequent years.
- If you buy a plan for three devices, the plans will translate to $54.99/$66.99 for the first year/subsequent years.
- For five devices, it would cost you $54.99/$66.99, respectively.
Two Years, One Device
- Single device: $74.99/$92.99
- Three devices: $99.99/$121.99
- Five devices: $124.99/$152.99
Mac Washing Machine Secure X9
- One Year, One Device: $55.99/$64.99
- One Year, Three Devices: $99.99/$119.99
- Two Years, One Device: $99.99/$119.99
- Two Years, Three Devices: $209.99/$239.99
Inclusions: All features of Mac Washing Machine X9 + VirusBarrier X9 and NetBarrier X9.
Mac Premium Bundle X9
- One Year, One Device: $69.99/$84.99
- One Year, Three Devices: $94.99/$115.99
- One Year, Five Devices: $119.99/$146.99
- Two Years, One Device: $129.99/$158.99
- Two Years, Three Devices: $174.99/$213.99
- Two Years, Three Devices: $219.99/$268.99
4. Avast – a Popular Option
- Network security scanner
- Fantastic user reviews
- Comprehensive free version
- Takes up a lot of storage space
- Slow installation
Avast provides a wide range of security solutions for PCs, smartphones, tablets, and other devices such as laptops or routers.
The company’s products include free-to-use security tools such as free antivirus, parental control, anti-malware and firewall tools, and premium paid products such as online backup service Avira Online Backup, mobile security solution Avira Mobile Security for Android and iOS devices, or cloud-based backup service Avira Sync Services.
Avast is one of the only antivirus software providers for Mac whose free suite is comprehensive and truly valuable for the users.
For premium users, it provides features like a Real Site to protect your Mac against malicious websites, a firewall, data shredder, and sensitive data shield.
It also provides enhanced features like a remote-access shield, a sandbox, and a webcam shield apart from Password protection.
Its premium plans also include VPN, Avast Cleanup Premium for performance optimization, and Avast AntiTrack. Avast is a complete security solution for your smart home.
The pricing tiers of Avast are quite transparent, but, notably, the VPN inclusion is very limited, which is unlike other antivirus solutions compared here.
However, the rest of the package can be considered cost-effective, especially for buyers who want to buy a no-nonsense package.
Avast Premium Security
- $39.99 for the first year, $69.99 from the next year for a single device
- $49.99 for the first year, $89.99 from the next year for up to 10 devices
Avast Ultimate Security
- $59.99 for the first year, $99.99 from the next year for a single device
- $69.99 for the first year, $119.99 from the next year for up to 10 devices
5. Bitdefender – Antivirus for Everyone
- Good set of extra features
- Easy to use
- Free trials
- Limited VPN access
- Windows antivirus is superior to Mac
Bitdefender is a Romanian cybersecurity software vendor founded in 2001 by Florin Talpeș with its headquarters in Bucharest.
It has an international presence with more than 1,600 employees, and it is hailed as one of the best antivirus solutions for Mac devices.
It has a wide range of products that cater to everyone, including retail customers, corporates seeking cybersecurity, SMBs, and even governments.
Bitdefender has one of the largest lists of cybersecurity protection features for Mac users with app-specific protections. It offers subscriptions for up to fifteen devices, making it an economical choice for families.
Since it offers macOS-specific antivirus software packages, buyers can enjoy a lag-free user experience.
Bitdefender offers ransomware, malware, spyware, and adware apart from web filtering technology.
It also provides social network protection, file shredder, VPN service, and anti-tracker extension.
Bitdefender has a double advantage when it comes to its best antivirus for Mac pricing tiers.
They provide the largest range of multiyear, multi-device price grids, and it is also one of the most affordable vendors on our list.
Bitdefender Antivirus Plus
- One Year, One Device: $19.99/$39.99
- One Year, Three Devices: $29.99/$59.99
- One Year, Five Devices: $69.99
- One Year, Ten Devices: $79.99
- Two Years, One Device: $41.99/$69.99
- Two Years, Three Devices: $53.99/$89.99
- Two Years, Five Devices: $109.99
- Two Years, Ten Devices: $129.99
- Three Years, One Device: $53.99/$89.99
- Three Years, Three Devices: $71.99/$119.99
- Three Years, Five Devices: $149.99
- Three Years, Ten Devices: $179.99
Bitdefender Total Security
- One Year, Five Devices: $39.98/$89.99
- One Year, Ten Devices: $44.99/$99.99
- Two Years, Five Devices: $39.98/$89.99
- Two Years, Ten Devices: $101.99/$169.99
- Three Years, Five Devices: $119.99/$199.99
- Three Years, Ten Devices: $137.99/$229.99
Bitdefender Family Pack
- One Year, Fifteen Devices: $49.99/$119.99
- Two Years, Fifteen Devices: $119.99/$199.99
- Three Years, Fifteen Devices: $119.99/$199.99
Bitdefender Premium Security
- One Year, Ten Devices:$64.99/$149.99
Inclusions: Unlimited VPN and priority support.
All five antivirus solutions that we reviewed enjoy the patronage of millions of users with reliable, consistent service quality.
One of the key differentiating factors that you must keep in mind is the number of devices you want to use and the add-ons like VPN that you get as a standard with the plan of your choice.
If we were to recommend you use Antivirus software for your Mac based on getting the most value for money package, we would choose Avast.
It has a lot of standard and additional features that provide you with a full suite of cybersecurity solutions.
If you want to use a large number of devices and want to choose from more multiyear options, Bitdefender is an equally appreciable choice.
We hope that this best antivirus for Mac review helps you get a better understanding of how different Mac antivirus software options weigh against each other and provide you with their latest full-price lists.
Best Antivirus for Mac FAQs
What is the Best Antivirus for Mac?
Based on your requirement, you can select either of the below mentioned best antivirus for Mac antivirus software packages:
- Intego Mac Internet Security X9
- Bitdefender for Mac
- McAfee Antivirus Plus
- Norton 360 Standard
- Trend Micro Antivirus for Mac
- Avast Security for Mac
- Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac
How Do You Run Antivirus Software on a Mac?
You can’t run antivirus software on an iPhone the same way you can on a Mac or a PC. When you download applications on your iPhone, the application software is set up in a sandbox—it has restricted access.
While the security apps available for iPhone users cannot detect malware on your phone, they can help prevent you from getting malware on your phone.
Is it Important to Have Antivirus Software on a Mac?
While most enthusiasts deny the need to install antivirus software on a Mac, many studies have found that MacOS is more vulnerable than Windows due to lesser updates.
So, yes, it is very important to have best antivirus for Mac software.