Avast MAC Antivirus Review
While Macs are less likely to become infected with malware than Windows, they aren’t invincible. If you have noticed your Mac behaving strangely, or you just want to be sure your device is clean, maybe it’s time to shop around for anti-virus for your Mac. Below you will find a review of anti-malware software Avast based on 6 criteria: protection, effect on device’s performance, user interface, extra features, compatibility, and price. These are the most important criteria to take into account when choosing the right anti-virus program for your Mac.
Avast anti-virus for Mac review
Prague-based Avast is one of the most famous cybersecurity companies, and is the developer behind arguably the most popular anti-virus program Avast anti-virus. Avast is available for Microsoft Windows, macOS, Android and iOS.
Avast is often the primary choice for Mac users because it offers a free version with all essential anti-virus features. It has a large threat database, which allows it to detect all kinds of malware, and great extra features. If you want additional protection, the paid Avast Security Pro is also offered at a good price.
Avast for Mac Pros & Cons
- Has a fully functional free version available;
- High malware detection rate;
- User-friendly interface;
- Wi-Fi inspector will detect malicious actors on the network.
- Limited password manager functionality.
Avast protection for Macs
Both the free and the paid versions of Avast Security for Mac provide great protection against all kinds of malware. It will detect both less serious threats like adware and spyware, and highly malicious ones like trojans and even ransomware. Real-time protection will block threats as they are trying to get in, preventing potentially serious damage to your Mac.
In addition to guarding your computer from malware, Avast for Mac will also protect you when you’re online. If you were about to enter a phishing or otherwise malicious website, you would immediately be warned about it. It would also prevent you from downloading malicious email attachments.
Additional features Wi-Fi inspector will scan the network you’re connected to for malicious activity, and ransomware protection will safeguard your files from encryption by malware. Wi-Fi inspector is a useful feature if you regularly connect to public networks. If someone on the network was behaving in a malicious way, you’d be warned about it. And ransomware protection will essentially prevent unauthorized apps (such as ransomware) from making changes to your folders/files. The default settings will only allow Apple and App store apps to make changes, but you can whitelist additional apps if you wish.
Overall, Avast provides great security for your Mac, whether you choose the free or the paid version.
Effect on device’s performance
When an anti-virus program is performing certain tasks, it can consume a lot of system resources. This can temporarily affect the computer in a negative way, resulting in lagging. The negative impact can be very noticeable on older computers, but modern devices cope with the strain much better.
Whether Avast is idly monitoring your computer or performing a full scan, it doesn’t severely affect your computer’s performance. If you are using an older Mac, your fans may turn on, and you may experience some lag, however. If it bothers you too much, you can schedule system scans for when you’re not actively using your Mac.
A user-friendly interface is highly important for an anti-virus program because a complicated one will discourage users from using it, no matter how great it may be otherwise.
Avast is a very easy to use program, although its design could use some work. All available features are clearly displayed and everything is easily accessible. However, while the interface is simple, the design could be more modern.
- Ransomware shield: Included in the Pro version of Avast Security is a feature that will protect your files from ransomware. It will prevent unauthorized changes to your files in certain folders. You can whitelist apps, but only Apple and App Store apps will be authorized by default. So if ransomware got into your computer and tried to encrypt you files, Avast would block it from doing so.
Bear in mind that ransomware for Macs is still pretty rare, but it’s still a useful feature to have just in case.
- Password Manager: While not included in Avast Security anti-virus, Avast offers a free password manager. You can download it from the official website. It can not only store your passwords, but also your payment information so that you don’t have to fill it in every time you buy something online.
- Wi-Fi inspector: The Wi-Fi inspector is available in the Pro version of Avast Security. It will detect and warn you about malicious actors connected to the network. Useful feature if you frequently use public Wi-Fi.
- Avast SecureLine VPN: A virtual private network (VPN) protects your privacy, makes your browsing more secure, and allows you to bypass geo-restrictions. The VPN is not included in the Avast Security, but comes as a separate program. You can purchase a subscription at €59.99/year. There is also a 7-day free trial available.
Avast is compatible with:
- OS X Mavericks,
- OS X Yosemite,
- OS X El Capitan, macOS Sierra,
- macOS High Sierra,
- macOS Mojave.
- Avast also offers protection for iOS.
Avast offers two options for Mac users, a free and a paid one.
- Avast Security. This is the free version of Avast Security for Mac. Despite the fact that it’s free, it offers quite a lot of protection. It will detect, block and remove malware, warn you about unsafe websites/email attachments, and scan for Wi-Fi security weaknesses.
- Avast Security Pro. The paid version if offered at €59.99/year/1 Mac. However, at the time of writing, you can get it for €47.99. In addition to all free features, the pro version also gives you real-time Wi-Fi security alerts, and ransomware protection.
Keep in mind that when you subscribe to the program, you sign up for automatic renewal. That means that unless you cancel, you will be billed annually. Oftentimes, users stop using a program but do not cancel the subscription, resulting in them being billed again. Thus, to save yourself and Avast employees time, make sure you cancel your subscription prior to being billed if you no longer wish to use the program.
Avast has been in the game for a long time, and has a great reputation. It offers a free Mac version, and it doesn’t only provide the most basic features. The free version is actually mostly sufficient to protect your Mac from malware and other threats. However, the Wi-Fi inspector and ransomware protection Pro features are also great.
While it may lack some features that other anti-virus programs have (a personal firewall, parental control), it still is a highly powerful security program with a high malware detection rate. It’s also not overly expensive compared to other programs. We definitely recommend at least trying out Avast Security for Mac.