Although Apple developers constantly work on increasing the security of your user experience and security as a Mac user, you still need to participate in protecting your device. If you want your gear and personal information to be safe, try doing this simple security routine
Check your security settings
Go to “System Settings” – “Protection and Security” and select the “Privacy” section. Select applications that are allowed to access location information, iCloud, and detailed system information (“Universal Access” section). Actions are performed for all applications together, as well as for several selected from the list.
Turn on FileVault
OS X comes with FileVault built-in encryption system. If you turn it on, you need to give a username and password or recovery key to view any data on the computer. This system turns on all in the same settings section. After that, all internal storage is encrypted, and the system requests a password for any access to data.
Do not use Keychain
Do not rely on the built-in password storage service, especially when it comes to your browser data. Use third-party solutions instead. Unlike Keychain, where the system password guarantees access to all registration data, network storages, encrypted files, its alternatives require a master password. It will complicate any attempts of attackers to access to personal data.
Check iCloud Settings
Syncing through this cloud storage is one of the main benefits of the Apple ecosystem. However, if you have a shared home computer, automatic synchronization of photos, files, contacts, and other system and application data can become a source of information leakage. In this case, you should disable iCloud. To do so, go to “System Settings” – iCloud and click the “Exit” button. Naturally, it will not synchronize your data, but this action will become additional protection of personal information. If you don’t want to pay for it due to the lack of advantages of cloud storage, at least check if two-factor authentication is enabled.
Disable iMessage and FaceTime
Continuity is the main innovation of OS X and the most anticipated improvement in the company’s ecosystem of products. Thanks to it, calls, messages, and status data of other applications are synchronized with Mac via iPhone. However, it gets quite inconvenient if somebody else is using your computer, and you receive a private message. Not only will they see a pop-up notification with the text – by going to the “Messages.” Anyone with your computer can access your whole message history. A computer is a much less personal device than a smartphone, and if this security flaw bothers you, turn off synchronization in Messages and FaceTime. In each application, go to Settings and disable your Apple ID account.
Install only approved apps
By default, this option is enabled in the OS X settings. It restricts the installation of applications from unknown sources. So it protects the computer from malicious code, which, if it does not harm it, will become a source of problems for other gadgets that interact directly with it. To protect your device, go to “System Settings” – “Protection and Security” and select the Mac App Store and identified developers from the Allow apps downloaded from the drop-down list in the General column.
Finally, if you do not want to take care of security manually, you can always choose a Mac antivirus that will do all the work for you. All you need to do is pick the one that suits the technical characteristics of your computer.