Is Your Mac Secure? Try These Mac Security Settings
For years, people mostly assumed that their Macs were pretty much virus-proof. While security and privacy on Macs tend to be strong, malware that targets macOS is becoming more common thanks to an increase in popularity.
The Mac is losing the security through obscurity that its low market share once guaranteed. This means that if you want to stay safe, you need to know the right Mac security and privacy settings that can keep you safe.
In this guide, we’re going to show you how to secure your Mac: try these Mac security settings on for size, and you’ll have a more secure Macbook that’s less likely to get infected by malware, compromised by hackers, or fall victim to other security issues.
Are you ready to learn more and start bolstering your security? Then read on!
1. Disable Automatic Login
Automatic login can be very helpful. When you turn your Mac on, it logs you straight into your profile, which means that you can get to work or play that little bit faster.
However, this convenient feature could be putting your security at risk. If someone gained access to your Mac, they would be able to access
all of your files without ever entering a password.
To disable automatic login and boost your security, you need to head to Settings, then System Preferences, then Users & Groups, then click on “login options,” and hit “disable automatic login.
2. Turn Your Firewall on
A firewall is an essential piece of security software. It essentially monitors incoming traffic to your device, which means that it can keep malware and hackers out.
The firewall isn’t turned on by default on Macs, so you’ll need to dig into settings to enable it. Follow these steps:
1. Go to Settings
2. Click on System Preferences
3. Click on Security & Privacy
4. Go to the Firewall tab
5. Click on the lock in the bottom left and enter your username and password
6. Turn on the firewall
7. Click on Firewall options
8. Enable stealth mode
9. Click on the lock again
3. Change Your Password Regularly
Do you use the same password for your Mac and, well, everything else that you do online? If you do, then you’re putting your security at risk. If one account is compromised, then a hacker could easily access your Mac and its files.
Change your password regularly, preferably around once per month, and make sure that it’s different from your other passwords. If you’d like to make your user security even stronger, then you could consider using a password manager to generate a very strong password for you, but this could be difficult to remember.
For more information about how to change your password, you should check out this helpful guide: https://setapp.com/how-to/change-login-password-on-mac.
4. Turn on Find My Mac
Physical security is a very important part of any computer’s security: why do you think data centers have such strong security? While keeping your Mac behind such intense security is, shall we say, impractical, there is one setting that you can tweak to improve your
Find My Mac uses the same technology as Find My iPhone: if your Mac is lost or stolen, you can use the app to locate your Mac and recover it. If this isn’t possible, you can remotely lock it and wipe all of its data, which renders it useless.
To turn on Find My Mac, you need to follow these steps:
1. Go to System Preferences
2. Click on Apple ID
3. Scroll down to find the “Find My Mac” checkbox
4. If it’s not enabled, click on the checkbox
5. Wait while it sets up
If you’d like to check out what Find My Mac can do, you can check it out in your browser and do a test run. If you have an iPhone or iPad, you can also use the Find My app to locate your Mac.
5. Only Allow Secure Apps
What’s a computer without apps and programs? You’d have a poor user experience if you could only use the software that the Mac came with, but that doesn’t mean that you should install just anything on your machine.
Some pieces of malware masquerade as legitimate software. Yet how can you tell these apart from the genuine article? Apple has a handy system that can help with that.
To enable it, you’ll need to follow these instructions:
1. Go to System Preferences
2. Click on Security & Privacy
3. Click on the lock
Now that the settings are unlocked, you can set your Mac to only accept apps from the App Store, or, if you’d prefer, to only accept apps from the App Store and “identified developers,” who Apple can verify.
While neither of these settings guarantees complete security, you’re far less likely to be infected by malware if you use either of these settings than if you installed any old app.
6. Turn on Automatic Updates
Operating system updates can seem annoying at times. They take up valuable time and can be disruptive to your work, especially if you need to restart your machine to finish them.
However, most operating system updates are there to patch up security holes in your system, which would otherwise make your system vulnerable. This means that turning on automatic updates is one of the best ways to stay secure.
To do this, you’ll need to follow these instructions:
1. Go to System Preferences
2. Click on Software Update
3. Enable “automatically keep my Mac up to date”
Try These Mac Security Settings and Improve Security
You should try these Mac security settings today. They can all help to improve your computer’s security and none of them are disruptive. In short, they’ll help to keep you safe without harming your experience whatsoever.
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