How-To Geek

And So It Begins – Another New Anti-Virus for Mac Steps Forward

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Mac’s security through obscurity is now one step closer to being gone. Today Sophos has released a new, free home edition anti-virus for Mac to help combat the growing threats to the platform.

With the emergence of last week’s new Trojan virus aimed at Mac, it is becoming clear that the system is falling more into malware authors’ targeting sights every day.

From the Sophos blog post: Most people don’t know that Apple acknowledged the malware problem by integrating rudimentary protection against a handful of Mac Trojans in Snow Leopard. But 95% of those Mac users we surveyed recently are convinced that more attacks are on the way.

From CNET: Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition for Mac also detects malware written for Windows that Mac users can spread via USB drives and e-mail, Chet Wisniewski, a senior security advisor at Sophos, told CNET. The software is a noncommercial version of Sophos Anti-Virus 7.2 for Mac, targeted at home users and modified so it is easier to install and use, he said.

From Download Squad: All the features you’d expect from a good antivirus app are there — like realtime protection, heuristics (the ability to detect new threats for which Sophos does not have definitions), autorun defense, and quarantining.

So there you have it. What are your thoughts? Are you surprised that Mac is becoming more of a malware target or have you been expecting it? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

Photo by Sophos.

Yes, you need anti-virus on your Mac.. and now it’s free [via CNET News & DownloadSquad]

Download Sophos Anti-Virus for Mac Home Edition

Visit the new Sophos Anti-Virus for Mac Home Edition forums

Akemi Iwaya is a devoted Mozilla Firefox user who enjoys working with multiple browsers and occasionally dabbling with Linux. She also loves reading fantasy and sci-fi stories as well as playing "old school" role-playing games. You can visit her on Twitter and .

  • Published 11/2/10

Comments (13)

  1. Hatryst

    Ah, this made me change my mind. I won’t switch to a Mac now :D

  2. Cobra Commander

    Apple has been smug for too long. It was a matter of time before someone got a MAC and figured out it’s security flaws. Anything that can be programmed can be un-programmed and Apple will find out what it is like to have a user community rise up and complain the same way most people do about Windows and Microsoft. While MS openly admits some of it’s flaws and fixes, Apple always has hidden most of the issues from the public…remember the yellowing monitor issues? no? that’s because they got removed from Apple’s website.
    Apple has the best PC “marketing” and made itself popular by bashing a company that spent 15 years figuring out the public, their wants and needs and then bashing Microsoft for not being perfect…Microsoft ventured into the unknown and is still surviving strong…
    have you updated your iPhone lately, notice how they had to put out updates to fix stupid issues…sounds a lot like Windows Service packs…

    Question: Is Apple still paying Microsoft back for the bailout?

  3. jacobdb

    well, apple might have a “fix” for this…. mainly called apple mac store, just like linux package managment, this will result in less virusses to be spread, because all applications are in a central checked system, instead of spread across the web.

  4. eddietours

    you sure ?? about mac store

  5. Diego

    Yeah, you’ll be able to buy iNotePad there for 5 bucks…

  6. TheBeard

    i’ve been waiting for the Mac viruses to pop up

  7. Grant Burtt

    Well I hate to say i told you so but Apple has never ever been a company that has helped the PC comunity by helping themselvs they would have been helping the world but for years their pc systems on any network were always a vulnarability to any other system on that network why because viruses could hide in a appple machine far easier than a windows system and ren exploits from a mac system making that very system the downfall of all other systems. Do you know how much Mac has paid the Antivirus Community for years to shgut up about their issues. see you cant really detect a virus unless you have a software program that detects the virus for you. any windows system will run without Antivirus for months or years so long as you dont go surfing in shark infested servers.and compromised pages IE: porn and anywhere a system is designed to load a virus if you go to most porn sites and dont actually buy a subscription the system will try to load antivirus8 onto your system this is a exploit of a virus program that is actually malware that some stoopid noobes actually click on and then the ball starts this works on mac also. once that little babies in ther your system is loaded with real and fake trojans it shuts down firewalls screams out your IP and tells any port scanner your ports are all wide open. so come on in. Designed espacially for mac systems. Bastards. I think that mostly Antivirus makers write the viruses also. why not it keeps their sales going. see The problem is not viruses alone its buggy systems that are and have software incompatabilities. apple is a FAIL at this see they own the hardware and the software and they still can’t get it to function. but Apple serves its purpose the world cant seem to have a dominant pc industry with one pc type. so Microsoft and Apple have always been silent partners. But you can’t accept this. Nor will you ever. 2 companies can pretend to be rivals thus giving the world community a choice like everything else its all generic labels. Apple is the storm trooper while Microsoft is Darth Vader. Wake up people.

  8. FishSauce

    I feel dumber for reading Grants rant. I might have lost 2 IQ points for it. Thanks Grant.

  9. Kevalin

    I feel dumber for reading grant’s rant because it is so badly written, and pretty bloody paranoid to boot.

    That said, all I can say about Apple’s “sudden” issues with viruses is, “well, DUH!!! Only an idiot would believe that any platform with as fast a growing customer base as Apple would not eventually become a major target of people who make their money by stealing via computer. And anyone who’s been paying any attention at all to all the hacks that have made it possible to unlock/jailbreak Apple’s various toys has to realize that their computer platforms should be just as vulnerable.

    Welcome to the real world, boys and girls of Apple. Ouch.

  10. Kevin

    I hate to see anyone’s computer hit with a virus, but now all the Mac people out there can stop thinking their precious Macs are unable to get a virus. Like I tell them all the time, any OS can be attacked.

  11. David

    I think i too, can say i told you so and to a number of people!

    i find it hilarious, as mac set itself up to fall on its sword. if one of you biggest selling points is that you dont get viruses, then as soon as you start taking any part of the market you are going to see them.

  12. geekmom2010

    I feel that all these years, Apple has been deceiving themselves along with purchasers of their computers and iPods. With the virus thing, I don’t understand why Apple thought they could be invincible. I also think that the Apple brand computers have BEEN getting viruses and this fact was being hidden from the public in order to make their equipment look better than the billions of PC’s being sold, but what good did it do them? I think buyig an Apple machine would just be purely for the looks when it’s just as durable as a pc, and now that they’ve admitted it, can also be hacked to (the blue screen of) death.

  13. Grant Burtt

    @FishSauce You had 0 IQ si that would now make you minus 2.

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