Viruses On My Mac?! Probably.
(A version of this story was originally posted by Wendy Zomora a few years ago.)
There are a lot of reasons Mac users don’t sweat getting infected. One: They’ve got a built-in anti-malware system called XProtect that does a decent job of catching known malware. Two: Macs are not plagued by a high number of attacks because most cyber criminals are focused on infecting PCs. And three: There’s just not a lot of Mac malware out there.
Well, that was mostly true a few years ago. But Mac malware has increased by 230 percent in the last year alone. Most Mac users don’t know this, and assume their Mac is fine.
Bad News: Your Mac is probably infected…with some sort of virus! Maybe it's advertising ware, maybe a little spyware, or worse, malicious ware. Adware is software that’s designed to display advertisements, usually within a web browser. Most people don’t willingly download programs whose sole purpose is to bombard you with ads, so adware has to sneak its way onto your Mac. It either disguises itself as legitimate or piggybacks on another program in order to be installed. Once in your system, adware changes the way your browser behaves by injecting ads into web pages, causing pop-up windows to open, and changing your homepage or search engine—all in the name of funneling advertising dollars away from companies who pay for online ads and into their own accounts. Spyware works in a similar way but its main job is to steal your information. Logins, passwords, bank account numbers, identities. You get the idea. Malicious ware (Malware) was created to allow these other viruses to work better and make it easier for them to infect your computer by weakening your existing defenses or creating un-monitored back doors. And just so you know, the first viruses starting popping up on Macs way back in 2012.
So maybe it's time to start taking a closer look at your Mac. Is it acting the way your sturdy, reliable Mac has always behaved? Or is it exhibiting signs of slowness? If something seems a little off, you just might have a problem. Give us a call and we'll give it a checkup to put your mind at ease. 360-695-6988 in Vancouver or 503-224-9288 if you live in the Portland area. We're local, friendly and have been fixing computers since 2002. We really know our stuff.