Top 6 Features to Keep Your Mac Secure

cat protecting an old iMac by sleeping in the monitor

Written by Cailey Gibson

March 24, 2020

Do you know all the ways to secure a Mac using built-in features on your computer?

As a business owner, securing your computer is one way to prevent cyber-attacks and with Mac you have a whole arsenal of built-in features at your disposal. Securing your Mac computer should be a top priority for your business whether you’re a small business or a large business. 

If you use a Mac in your business you may have additional security features that you’re not using. Below we’ve listed some helpful tools within the Mac system you can turn on right now.

Enable Automatic Software Updates

Software releases are done for a reason, to keep up with the advancing malware and cyberattack methods. If you miss a software update or multiple software updates, your computer becomes more vulnerable to those malware attacks which are increasing every day. 

By installing the software updates immediately you secure your Mac computer to protect your information and your client’s information too. Many people don’t take the time to update the software manually when it’s released and an easy way to work around that on a Mac is to set up the Automatic Software Updates. To do this, go to System Preferences > Software Update and then check the box for “Automatically keep my Mac up to date.”

Login Requirements

Now that you’ve set up automatic software updates, it’s time to look at your password requirements. Many people already have their password required for every time they log in, which is great. If you don’t have it set up, this is an easy way to secure your Mac computer.

Another step to increase your security is to have a password required when the screensaver begins. It’s an additional security measure to protect your data and doesn’t impact your work. To turn on password when the screensaver starts, go to Apple menu > System Preferences > Security & Privacy, then check the box for “require password after screensaver begins”.

Check Your Privacy Settings

Another fairly easy way to secure your Mac computer is to check your privacy settings. There are a few areas within the privacy settings you should check. For example, you should check if you are sharing your location or allowing your programs to collect data. 

Sharing your location and allowing programs to collect data are extremely important as they give more information than is needed for other programs. Additionally, those programs may not be the best at protecting your information and if they get hacked your privacy and security are at risk. 

To turn off location services go to System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Privacy > Location and uncheck “Enable Location Services”. 

While your in that vicinity also turn off information sharing by going to System Preferences > Spotlight > Search Results and unchecking “Spotlight Suggestions” and “Allow Spotlight Suggestions in Look up”. 

Enable Firewall

Did you know your Mac has a built-in firewall? The firewall on your Mac is an inbound firewall meaning it protects against certain threats that are trying to get into your system. You can turn this feature on by going to Apple > System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Firewall. After unlocking the preference pane by clicking the lock symbol at the bottom, click the button Turn On Firewall.

Unfortunately, some threats can still get into your computer even with an inbound firewall which is why it’s good to also have an outbound firewall. Outbound firewalls help prevent unwanted programs that get into your system from connecting to the internet and sharing your information. We recommend solutions based on your needs and if you’re interested in protecting your data you can set up an appointment for a risk assessment. 

Enable FileVault

Another built-in feature you can use to secure your Mac computer is Filevault. Filevault is full disk encryption on your Mac. That means if your computer is stolen then they won’t have access to critical data or files.

When you enable FileVault, as soon as your Mac is shut down the entire drive is encrypted and locked up. The drive is only unlocked when someone turns the Mac on and logs in using proper credentials. It’s an additional security measure to protect data if your business requires you to be on the go. You can enable it by going to System Preferences > Security & Privacy > FileVault and check the box to turn on FileVault.

Configure and Enable Time Machine

Last but not least, you should be backing up all your files. Time Machine is a built-in file backup system on your Mac which you can enable and have automatically back up to an external hard drive or other external device. When you turn on Time Machine, it backs up hourly so you don’t lose all your data. 

To enable Time Machine plug in your external device and it will prompt you to use this device for Time Machine. If your computer does that, follow the instruction to set it up.

If it doesn’t prompt you after plugging in your external device, go to Apple menu > System Preferences > Time Machine then click “Select Backup Disk” and follow the prompts from there. 

You can easily secure your Mac computer with the slew of built-in features, many of which you may not know about. Part of our job is to help you get the most out of the systems you already have in hand.

That being said, additional security measures should be taken if you are using more than one device, if you are more than a solopreneur, or if you have sensitive customer data. Don’t get caught thinking this is enough to secure your Mac. Next steps are to check out the article “The Myth: You Don’t Need Antivirus for Macs” or set up an appointment today to discuss your particular security needs and to protect your business. 

You May Also Like…

Quickly Secure a Mac with FileVault

In today's tech environment, cybersecurity is on everyone's mind. Business owners are scrambling to ensure that their systems are safe. However,...

Why BitDefender is The Best Malware Protection for macOS

As macOS continues to gain in popularity for small businesses and enterprises, it is important to protect the data on Macs. There is a misconception that Macs don’t get malware and the large number of Mac users spread across the globe make for good fodder for potential targets for cybercriminals and hackers. This article lays out why we believe BitDefender is the best malware protection for macOS.

Why Email Security is Vital to Your Business

Emails are communications we deal with on a daily basis in the business world. For some, emails are the first thing they look at in the morning and the last thing they look at before bed. They are an integral part of business and because of this, they are a great way for attackers to gain access.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.