If you think your Mac doesn’t need antivirus software, think again. The growing threats have made all computers, including those with macOS, vulnerable to viruses and malware. While Apple’s software has traditionally done a great job of protecting devices, adding another layer of defense is helpful for added peace of mind. Here’s how to spot the sure signs that your computer is infected and how to better protect your computer in the future.
Signs You May Have Problems on Mac
Your computer may be telling you something. Affected computers raise different red flags to indicate a problem. Your computer probably won’t show every sign, but it will at least show a few. These include:
The clearest sign that a virus may have entered your computer is that it is running much slower than usual.
– A surprising change in your web browser’s home page could be another sign that something is up. New toolbars in Safari also indicate a problem.
– Unexpected ads or popping up security alerts could be another sign. Adware clicks are more annoying than outright dangerous. However, they still need to be swept away.
– Being unable to open files or system settings on your Mac is a major sign that things aren’t quite right.
What can we do?
If you’re sure you have malware on your computer, there are a few things you can do to fix the problem. The first step depends on whether you already have an antivirus software package installed. If you do, immediately run a system scan and see if it detects a problem. Make sure the software is using the latest update. If it’s not up to date, be sure to install it. If malware is detected, follow the removal instructions from your antivirus software provider.
Without antivirus software installed, there are other troubleshooting steps you can take. Restart your computer after performing each one. First, look inside the ‘Applications’ folder on your Mac and look for unknown software titles. Delete these apps by dragging them to the ‘Trash’ and then right-clicking and selecting ‘Delete Trash’. You should also delete everything in the ‘Downloads’ folder. This is where you will find files downloaded from the internet. Then take a look at the login items on your computer. Go to “System Preferences”, click “Users & Groups” and select the “Login Items” tab. Uncheck any item that looks suspicious.
Finally, go to the ‘Safari’ app and select Safari > Preferences from the menu bar. Select the ‘General’ tab and check the ‘Home’ list. Check if it’s correct or if there is a site you didn’t add. Change the ‘Home Page’ as needed. Additionally, click the ‘Extensions’ tab in Safari > Preferences and make sure these are the extensions you have installed. Delete any extensions that don’t look right.
The final step
If you’re still having problems with your Mac, it’s time to contact Apple support for additional troubleshooting. Steps may include the company remotely examining your computer to visit an Apple retail store.