Does the new Snow Leopard have any anti-virus, trojan or spyware protection built in?

  • Asked about:  Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard

2 Answers from the Community

  • Best Answer:

    10.6 Snow Leopard has a new feature that protects you against malware files. This combined with Unix security built into the Operating System means you can browse the web safely. Apple also provides security updates to users addressing new exploits are discovered in the industry.

    You can feel safe with Mac OS X as it is one of the most secure Operating Systems.

  • It depends on what you mean by "protection."

    The Good News. Snow Leopard and Lion do indeed both have powerful, buit-in security features. These include the ability to "lock down" user accounts in ways that make it quite difficult for malware to gain control WITHOUT THE OWNER'S CONSENT.

    However, the bad guys are getting quite adept at using social engineering -- for example, phony java update pop-ups -- to fool you into entering an administrative password so malware can install itself. This is how the "Flashback" trojan reportedly infected nearly half a million Macs in early 2012. (The phony pop-ups are getting increasingly authentic-looking, so much so that I personally dismiss ALL these alerts, and either run Software Update, or go directly to the vendor's website by hand-entering the URL into Safari.)

    Also, AFAIK, no version of Mac OS X to date has a dedicated antivirus, anti-trojan or anti-spyware program "built in."

    This is why you now see selected, high quality anti-Malware programs offered both in the Apple Store and through the Mac app store. If you're a sophisticated user, and willing to turn off Java and Java-Script in your browsers, you may not need such a program. However, the question you're asking right now is a sign that you probably do need one, IMO.