Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Free Anti-Virus for the Mac

While the Mac has been practically immune to virus and worm attacks, the ever increasing number of Macs continue to make Apple computer users an attractive target to malware writers. Apple themselves have said that Mac users should be aware that although we have enjoyed a peaceful existence we need to maintain safe security practices and be aware and alert to possible dangers. There are Mac viruses out there. I began using a free antivirus package called ClamXav and although it didn't seem like a very polished product, the price was right. It was quite a resource hog though and I found myself shutting it down to prevent the computer from slowing down due to a virus scan which kind of defeats the purpose of having it.

Back in July '08, PC Tools released iAntiVirus, a free version of their commercial antivirus package for home use - just like Avast! or AVG for Windows.  It promises to be discreet and be light on the resources so I'm giving it a go.  If it works well enough, I'll let you all know.  We need to maintain good security regardless of what kind of computer we have.  With all the unprotected Macs out there with no virus protection at all we are in danger of suffering from an epidemic like Windows experiences with the "I Love You" and "Melissa" viruses hit.  Of course Windows users that maintained proper security - antivirus and firewall - were not affected, but it goes to show how few people back then actually took security seriously.  So Mac users shouldn't be caught like that - we are not immune - and it would be really embarrassing.

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