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10 Best Mac Antivirus Software in 2023 (Tested Free & Paid)

Sayb Saad
Last Updated by Sayb Saad on April 01, 2023

While most antiviruses focus on Windows users, I wanted to see if there are any built from the ground up for macOS devices. As a regular Mac user, I take my privacy and security very seriously to keep my personal information from falling into the wrong hands.

To save you time and money, I tested the best Mac-focused antiviruses and picked out the best 10. I focused on antiviruses that can detect Mac-specific malware and include bonus security features and optimization tools.

After rigorous testing, I was most impressed by Intego, a Mac-exclusive antivirus with exceptional malware detection rates. It also includes a range of useful extras like advanced backup and optimization tools to make your Mac run even better. I highly recommend you try Intego risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try Intego for your Mac

Quick Guide: 10 Best Antiviruses for Mac

  1. IntegoIntego is the #1 Mac antivirus that offers perfect real-time detection and optimization tools to make your Mac run faster.
  2. MacKeeper — Minimum impact on Mac performance so that your system doesn’t slow down, but MacKeeper lacks a native firewall.
  3. McAfee Total Protection — Perfect real-time protection keeps your Mac safe from malware, but McAfee’s full scans may impact system performance.
  4. TotalAV — Plenty of Mac optimization tools to speed up your Mac, but TotalAV’s free plan has limited capabilities.
  5. Norton 360 — Has 100% real-time detection rates and a powerful firewall that protects you from malware, but its Windows app is more feature-rich.
  6. Bitdefender Total Security — Provides excellent ransomware protection to protect your Mac from malware, but may fail to detect some zero-day malware.
  7. Panda — Impeccable user experience with a visual and dynamic dashboard for easy malware scanning, but it has a data cap unless you buy the premium plan.
  8. Avira Free Antivirus for Mac — Has a free plan for Mac with useful extras but its VPN has limited unblocking capabilities despite having a decent server count.
  9. Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac — Decent malware-detection capabilities for Mac protection, but it collects its users’ data by default.
  10. Vipre — Easy-to-use antivirus makes scanning and real-time protection easy, but it severely lacks essential features on its Mac.

Try Intego for your Mac

The Best Antiviruses for Mac — Full Test Results in April 2023

1. Intego — #1 Antivirus and Exclusively Developed for Mac

Key Features:

  • A powerful antivirus engine protects you against Mac-specific threats
  • Bonus features include Mac optimization tools, parental controls, and cloud backup
  • Compatible with macOS 10.9 and later
  • Customer assistance available over the phone and live chat
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

Intego stands out as the #1 antivirus for Mac. It has perfect detection capabilities and a suite of optimization tools that improve your Mac’s performance. After thorough testing, I concluded that Intego enhances Apple’s in-built security features — something other antiviruses struggle with.

Its VirusBarrier detected 100% of the 300+ malware samples (including Windows-based malware) I planted on my Mac. Besides perfect detection, Intego didn’t register any false positives and didn’t take much time to scan my Mac.

Screenshot of Intego's VirusBarrier performing a virus scan on Mac
Intego offers fast and thorough malware scans

You can use 3 scan options with Intego — quick scan, full scan, and custom scan. The secret behind Intego’s fast scans is its file-caching mechanism, which skips previously scanned safe files. The quick scan took just 2 minutes to scan over 50,000 files, while the full scan analyzed over 1.7 million files in about 30 minutes.

While Intego doesn’t offer as many features as competitors like Norton, it makes up for that with its quality-over-quantity approach. The 2-way network firewall (NetBarrier) goes above and beyond macOS’s built-in firewall by monitoring incoming and outgoing web traffic for malicious activity. Although many antiviruses come packaged with a firewall, few offer the level of 2-way protection that Intego does.

Screenshot of Intego's firewall monitoring incoming and outgoing traffic
NetBarrier automatically configures itself depending on the type of network you’re connected to

Intego’s “Washing Machine” and “Personal Backup” stand out as its best features. The “Washing Machine” features optimization tools make your Mac faster by removing junk files. Its “Organize” mode automatically organized my desktop and dock, alerting me to the apps I often use so I could drag them to the dock for easier access.

Screenshot of Intego's Washing Machine clearing up disk space
I saw a noticeable improvement in my Mac’s performance after using Washing Machine

From a security perspective, Intego provides airtight security for your Mac and includes the following features:

  • 100% accurate real-time protection
  • Anti-phishing protection and network monitoring
  • Parental controls to monitor your child’s online and offline activities
  • Personal backup for keeping your sensitive data secure

Intego offers a bunch of Mac-specific plans. “Mac Internet Security” is the most basic plan, suitable for users who only need a solid antivirus and network protection. You can buy it for 1, 3, or 5 devices. However, the “Mac Premium Bundle” is its best-value plan because it includes Washing Machine, backup tools, and Content Barrier.

For families, you can also get the ContentBarrier x9 plan, which gives you access to the ContentBarrier app. You can use its parental control features to protect your child online on 1 or 3 devices. If you are only looking to improve your Mac’s performance, Intego also offers its Washing Machine as a standalone plan.

If you’re serious about protecting your Mac, Intego is the best antivirus option you’ll find on the market. Its software was built from the ground up to protect Apple products with perfect malware detection rates and features that improve your Mac’s performance. Try Intego for 30 days with its money-back guarantee so that you can test it out first and see if it suits you.

Try Intego for your Mac

2. MacKeeper — Extremely Lightweight on Macs

Key Features:

  • Near-perfect real-time protection against Mac-specific malware
  • Adware cleaner keeps all adware at bay
  • Data breach monitoring that protects your identity 24/7
  • VPN that lets you browse the internet anonymously on your Mac
  • 14-day money-back guarantee

MacKeeper is one of the best antiviruses for Mac users. Like Intego, it’s specifically designed to protect Macs and other Apple products. Its standout feature was how lightweight it was on my Mac. Despite running a full scan, I could browse the internet on multiple tabs and stream videos simultaneously without my Mac slowing down.

I planted 350 Mac-specific malware and 50 Windows-based viruses on my Mac to test MacKeeper’s detection capabilities. I’m happy to report that MacKeeper identified and blocked all of them, even zero-day viruses packed inside zip files. However, it didn’t detect rootkits in repeated scans, which was disappointing.

Screenshot of MacKeeper identifying malware in real-time
MacKeeper sends you a notification every time it blocks a malicious file on your Mac

MacKeeper’s Adware Cleaner identifies and flags apps with hidden adware. While most adware isn’t dangerous, they worsen your Mac experience by showing unnecessary pop-up ads and using your Mac’s resources to slow it down. I ran the adware cleaner, and it took 5 minutes to analyze my system. While my Mac didn’t have adware, I was at peace of mind that MacKeeper had me well-protected 24/7.

The data breach monitoring feature (ID Theft Guard) lets you see if any of your email addresses and online accounts have been compromised. I found that 2 of my online accounts were involved in a data breach a year back, so I immediately changed their passwords and marked them as fixed on MacKeeper’s app.

Unfortunately, the biggest drawback of MacKeeper is that it doesn’t have a native firewall, which I think is a must-have if you’re an avid internet user and often use public WiFi. I also felt the lack of parental controls and a password manager, which I took for granted while using Intego. Even so, MacKeeper is a top-of-the-line antivirus for Mac with near-perfect detection capabilities. Although it’s not as feature-rich as Intego, it still includes:

  • A real-time protection scanner that delivers 99.7% protection against viruses
  • A disk cleaner that removes junk and duplicate files and useless apps
  • An ad blocker that blocks malicious pop-up browser ads for a safer online experience
  • Optimization tools to improve boot time, update apps automatically, and free up RAM
  • A VPN for secure and anonymous internet browsing

MacKeeper offers a free and premium plan — you can use the free plan for trying it out, but I don’t recommend it for long-term use because it provides real-time protection for only up to a month. The premium plan keeps you protected without any limits and even comes with a VPN and data breach monitor that keeps you well-protected at all times.

If you want to test MacKeeper without the limitations of its free trial, you can get the monthly or annual plan with a 14-day money-back guarantee. I found the refund process cumbersome, but I was happy that I got my money back in just 3 days.

Try MacKeeper for your Mac

3. McAfee Total Protection — Comprehensive Mac Security With a Fast and Secure VPN

Key Features:

  • Successfully flags and removes all malware on Mac
  • Includes a VPN, firewall, file shredder, password manager, parental controls
  • Compatible with macOS 10.12 and later
  • Customer support over live chat and phone
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

McAfee Total Protection for Mac provides exceptional malware protection, and it’s an excellent bargain for families with up to 10 device licenses available. McAfee uses Global Threat Intelligence to analyze existing malware and predict future threats.

I was curious how it would perform against novel and fast-emerging threats, and I’m pleased to say McAfee exceeded my expectations with its 100% accurate detection scores. The only drawback is McAfee may weigh down on your Mac since it’s not built solely for Macs from the ground up.

Screenshot of McAfee's Quick Scan results on Mac
McAfee isn’t the fastest antivirus but still takes only a few minutes to perform a quick scan

I was happy to see that McAfee offers a range of useful extras that further enhance its security capabilities.

  • An advanced firewall that lets you have complete control over your internet traffic
  • Anti-phishing for secure browsing
  • Web protection tools, including ransomware protection
  • VPN that provides fast speeds
  • ID theft protection if you’re in the US, UK, or Ireland

I was thoroughly impressed by McAfee’s advanced firewall, which lets you have complete control over your internet traffic. Its “Intrusion Detection” alerts you against potential hackers trying to access your Mac. The “Net Guard” feature flags suspicious network connections. Having these features gives your Mac’s native firewall a substantial security boost.

One of McAfee’s best features is its VPN. Most antivirus VPNs fail to provide fast speeds but McAfee’s Safe Connect VPN gave me excellent speeds on nearby and mid-range servers with less than 15% performance drops, which is almost at par with a premium standalone VPN like CyberGhost.

The Total Protection bundle has 3 plans — Basic, Premium, and Advanced. All plans include a firewall, password manager, file shredder, identity monitoring for up to 10 email addresses, and web protection. I recommend the Premium plan because it covers up to 5 devices and lets you remove data from high-risk data broker sites.

While it lacks the bells and whistles of Intego, McAfee is an easy antivirus to recommend — especially if you’re looking for one bundled with an excellent VPN. You can try McAfee risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee, extendable to 60 days if you turn on automatic renewal. I tested its refund policy first-hand and got my money back in 5 business days.

Try McAfee for your Mac

4. TotalAV — Best Mac Antivirus for Beginners

Key Features:

  • Excellent defense against ransomware, spyware, adware, and more
  • Hosts a VPN, Mac cleanup tools, ad blocker, password manager, and more
  • Works on macOS 10.9 or higher
  • Offers 24/7 live chat, email, and phone support
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

TotalAV is a relatively new contender in the antivirus industry but has quickly established itself as one of the best overall antivirus options for Windows users. I was curious to see if that applies to macOS as well. After rigorous testing, I found that TotalAV is a good antivirus for Mac users.

It achieved 100% malware detection in scanning tests and a 99% detection score in my real-time tests. While this is slightly below Intego’s scores, TotalAV’s results are still pretty impressive and put it among the most secure antiviruses you can get. I also liked that TotalAV’s scan results included detailed summary reports, alerting me to malware, PUPs (potentially unwanted programs), tracking cookies, duplicate files, and other junk slowing my Mac down.

Screenshot of TotalAV's Smart Scan fixing optimization issues on Mac

TotalAV’s Smart Scan detected over 16GB of junk files and 365 duplicate files on my Mac

In addition to its excellent malware scanner, TotalAV’s Mac app comes with the following features:

  • Web Shield for safe browsing
  • Browser cleaner & manager
  • Optimization tools for Mac (startup manager and junk file removal)
  • VPN (available Internet Security and Total Security plans)
  • Ad blocker (Total Security only)
  • Secure Password Vault (Total Security only)

I was impressed by TotalAV’s suite of extras, particularly its Web Shield tool that blocked all phishing links and malicious websites and prevented me from downloading infected files. The browser extension is compatible with Safari, Chrome, and Firefox. I recommend using it on Safari because Apple has in-built phishing protection on its browser.

Another standout feature of TotalAV is its optimization toolset for Mac, which includes a junk file remover, startup manager, application uninstaller, and duplicate file finder. Each tool was fast and thorough, especially the startup manager. It quickly identified several pesky apps and prevented them from automatically launching, improving my Mac’s boot time.

There are 3 TotalAV products you can choose from — Antivirus Pro, Internet Security, and Total Security. The Antivirus Pro plan offers the best value as it has all the essential security features for thorough Mac protection. If you need protection for more than 3 devices with extra features like a VPN, an ad blocker, and a password manager, the other two plans should suffice.

While TotalAV does offer a free version for Mac, it’s only good if you’re looking for basic security. Its lack of real-time protection leaves your Mac vulnerable, and you’ll have limited access to optimization tools. You can try TotalAV’s paid plans risk-free as they’re backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee. I emailed customer support and got my refund within 5 days of confirmation.

Try TotalAV for your Mac

5. Norton 360 — Powerful Web Security and Real-Time Protection Features on Mac

Key Features:

  • Blocks and removes all types of malware (ransomware and phishing scams)
  • Includes cloud backup, parental controls, VPN, password manager, and more
  • Compatible with macOS 10.10 or later
  • 24/7 live chat and phone support
  • 60-day money-back guarantee

Norton is one of the few contenders like Intego that uses file-caching technology that makes subsequent scans happen faster. It has a powerful anti-malware engine with perfect real-time security, but one reason it’s at #5 on my list is that it’s not primarily built for macOS and lacks some features of its Windows app counterpart.

I found Norton’s virus scanner just as effective and fast as Intego’s. Its full scan detected 100% of the Mac- and Windows-specific malware I planted on my Mac in about half an hour. It also lets you easily schedule scans so that you don’t have to run them manually later on.

One of the main reasons behind Norton’s perfect real-time detection scores is its smart firewall, which automatically configures itself depending on the type of network you’re connected to. It automatically blocked suspicious programs on my Mac as well as apps trying to connect to the internet without my consent when I was on public WiFi.

Screenshot of Norton's smart firewall dashboard
Norton’s firewall on Mac keeps you well-protected but has fewer features than its Windows app firewall

Although Norton is my everyday antivirus for my Windows PC, its Mac version lacks some features. For example, Norton’s Mac app shows features like parental controls and cloud backup that don’t work. Even though the software itself is excellent, it’s hard not to feel that Norton treats Macs like an afterthought. Still, you’ll get the following features on your Mac

  • Web security browser extension for Safari for secure browsing
  • Smart firewall with advanced features
  • Dark web monitoring to protect your data and credentials
  • Password manager compatible with Safari browser for seamless auto-fill function
  • Mac cleaning tools for fixing optimization issues in a few clicks

Having said that, Norton provides great value on all its plans, but I prefer its “Standard” plan if you want to protect 1 Mac. You’d still have access to all the premium features, including a VPN (works on up to 3 devices), firewall, password manager, dark web monitoring, and real-time protection.

You can try out Norton without risk since it offers a generous 60-day money-back guarantee on all its plans. I tested its refund guarantee and submitted a refund request via its 24/7 live chat. I’m happy that I got my money back in 5 working days.

Try Norton 360 for your Mac

6. Bitdefender Total Security — Excellent Real-Time Scores With Powerful Ransomware Protection

Key Features:

  • Blocks and removes all types of malware (ransomware and phishing scams)
  • Includes cloud backup, parental controls, VPN, password manager, and more
  • Compatible with macOS 10.10 or later
  • 24/7 live chat and phone support
  • 60-day money-back guarantee

Bitdefender is a Windows-focused antivirus, so I naturally assumed it won’t be as good for my Mac — I was wrong! Bitdefender has one of the best anti-malware engines equipped on its Mac app and powerful anti-ransomware software that analyzes and securely backs up at-risk files.

Powered by an advanced anti-malware engine that uses artificial intelligence, Bitdefender achieved a 100% detection rate in my extensive scan tests. Its real-time protection caught 99.7% of threats, only missing 0.3% of Windows-based zero-day malware packed inside zip files.

Screenshot of Bitdefender's Deep Scan results on Mac

Despite its exceptional detection capabilities, Bitdefender’s Deep Scan can be a bit slow

I was quite impressed by Bitdefender’s Behavior Monitor tool, which prevents malware from corrupting your files or taking them hostage until you pay a ransom. Its “Ransomware Remediation” tool undoes ransomware’s damage to your sensitive data by decrypting it safely so that you don’t have to pay a ransom to recover them.

While Bitdefender’s core security features are great, I was disappointed with its VPN — especially since it’s one of a few handful extras Bitdefender offers in its paid plans. Its VPN has a data cap of 200MB per day, making it useless even for basic browsing. Other antiviruses like Intego don’t have usage limitations with their VPNs.

Having said that, it still offers plenty of features to protect your Mac from all kinds of threats.

  • Cloud-based real-time scanning that doesn’t weigh down your Mac
  • Safe Files for protecting sensitive data by putting them on the watch list
  • Time Machine protection for securing your backed-up data against ransomware
  • Traffic Light browser extension that provides perfect online protection for Mac
  • Autopilot acts as a security advisor to analyze your overall Mac’s security posture

VPN issues aside, Bitdefender is still an excellent choice for Mac users due to its near-perfect malware detection and low impact on system performance. While Bitdefender does offer a free version, it’s a barebones app that only includes virus scanning and lacks real-time and anti-ransomware protection.

I recommend its “Total Security” plan, which includes all the above features in the bulleted list above and covers up to 5 devices. All its plans are covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can protect your Mac with Bitdefender without risk.

Try Bitdefender for your Mac

7. Panda — Simple and Easy to Use Mac Antivirus

Key Features:

  • Defends Mac against ransomware, spyware, adware, and more
  • Includes a VPN for anonymous internet browsing
  • Compatible with macOS 10.10 and higher
  • Live chat, email, and phone support for customers
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

Panda is a top-rated antivirus for Windows, but much of its value comes from the fact that it offers an excellent free plan. Unfortunately, that’s not the case for Mac users — still, Panda is a decent antivirus with good protection against Mac-specific malware.

I was pleased with Panda’s performance on my detection tests. It caught 99.7% of all the malware I had planted on my Mac, only failing to detect a few tricky spyware and 1 trojan. The only problem was that it took well over 2 hours to perform a full scan on my Mac. That’s a lot compared to other competitors that provide similar or better detection rates in under an hour.

Having said that, Panda’s visually dynamic user interface had an immediate impact on me. The colors and graphics it uses, make it stand out at first glance. Not only that, I found it extremely easy to use with all the features clearly labeled and organized in the dashboard.

Screenshot of Panda's user interface while running a scan

I can safely say Panda is one of the best easy-to-use antiviruses I’ve used so far

Panda offers 4 plans — Essential, Advanced, Complete, and Premium. The Advanced plan offers the best value for money as it has all the essential core security features and extras like ID protection and parental controls to keep your Mac safe. To save you time and effort, I’ve drafted a comparison table of what features you’ll get in each plan.

Essential Advanced Complete Premium
Real-time Protection
WiFi Protection
Identity Protection
Parental Controls
Password Generator
VPN 150MB/day 150MB/day 150MB/day Unlimited
Disk Cleanup
Update Manager

All of Panda’s plans are available for 1, 3, 5, 10, and unlimited devices, which is great because it offers flexibility as per your needs. You can also get them for 1, 2, or 3 years — the longer you subscribe, the better discount you’ll get. Making a long-term commitment can be difficult, but you can try Panda risk-free for 30 days with its money-back guarantee.

Try Panda for your Mac

8. Avira Free Antivirus for Mac — Best No-Cost Protection for Mac

Key Features:

  • Defends Mac against ransomware, spyware, adware, and more
  • Includes a VPN for anonymous internet browsing
  • Compatible with macOS 10.10 and higher
  • Live chat, email, and phone support for customers
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

Avira is one of the few antiviruses that offers a free plan for Mac users. At first, I thought the free plan wouldn’t have real-time protection (like many other free Mac antiviruses out there), but to my surprise, it does! However, no free antivirus is perfect. As good as Avira’s free plan is, it lacks full access to the optimization toolkit available on the paid plans.

As far as core security is concerned, Avira achieved a near-perfect detection rate of 99.5%, which isn’t perfect but puts it among the top antiviruses on the market. I found that it uses integrated cloud technology to help achieve these impressive scores and keep its real-time scanner up-to-date on the latest threats.

Like TotalAV, Avira’s Quick Scan also looks for ways to improve your Mac’s overall performance in addition to just checking it for malware. It alerted me to several privacy and performance issues and quickly cleaned up tracking cookies and 4GB of junk files. While the free plan lets you fix some of these issues, you’ll have to upgrade to the paid plan to resolve all of them.

Screenshot of Avira's junk cleaner detecting junk files on Mac

I noticed that my Mac got faster after I cleaned junk files

One of Avira’s best features is its Safe Shopping browser extension, which not only protects your credit card information when you’re shopping but also blocks ads, trackers, and phishing links when you’re browsing online. The only drawback is that it’s not compatible with Safari yet, but you can use it on the Chrome, Firefox, Opera, or Microsoft Edge apps on Mac.

While I appreciate Avira offering its VPN on the free plan, it has a data cap of 500MB per month. You’ll have to upgrade to the paid plans to get unlimited access and its full server network. Despite having 150 servers across 37 countries, Avira has trouble unblocking geo-restricted content, so I wouldn’t pay extra just to get a sub-par VPN when I get a premium standalone VPN for that price.

Apart from its free plan, Avira offers 3 paid plans — Antivirus Pro, Internet Security, and Prime. Unless you want specific extra features like a gaming mode and data breach monitoring, I suggest you get the mid-tier plan because it has all the necessary features to protect your Mac.

Antivirus Pro Internet Security Prime
Real-time protection
Mac Disk Cleaner Basic Basic Advanced
Password Manager
Online Account Protection
Devices Covered 1, 3, or 5 1, 3, or 5 5 or unlimited
VPN 500MB/month 500MB/month Unlimited
Data Breach Monitoring
Gaming Mode

You can get each plan for a month, a year, or 2 years. The monthly subscription can be costly, so I’ll recommend going for the 1-year plan because it offers the best value for money. You can try Avira without any risk as it’s backed by a standard 30-day money-back guarantee — if you aren’t satisfied, you can claim a full refund.

Try Avira for your Mac

9. Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac — Solid Antivirus That Secures Your Online Shopping

Key Features:

  • Powerful anti-malware engine with excellent real-time protection
  • Includes VPN, webcam protection, parental controls, and more
  • Compatible with macOS 10.13 or later
  • Customer support via live chat and email
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac is a good option for Mac users and provides decent detection scores. However, the reason it’s second to last on my list is that it’s not as privacy-friendly as I thought — it collects user data to improve its cloud protection infrastructure. The good thing is you can opt out of its data collection policies.

Throughout my 4 weeks of testing, Kaspersky detected 99.4% of all the Mac- and Windows-specific malware I had planted on my Mac. I was impressed with Kaspersky’s accuracy as it only registered 3 false positives — far below the industry standard. Moreover, Kaspersky had a low impact on my Mac’s performance, only slowing it down by 8.5%, which is 3 times less than the industry average.

On the downside, Kaspersky’s Mac app isn’t loaded with as many features as its Windows app. Some of the features available on Mac are

  • Encrypted browser to protect online shopping
  • Webcam protection
  • Phishing protection
  • VPN (300MB per day)

Kaspersky’s Safe Money works like Avira’s Safe Shopping tool, giving you access to a secure browser that protects you from hackers when making online payments. This is ideal if you frequently use online banking and want an extra layer of protection.

I also really liked Kaspersky’s webcam protection, as it’s hard to find Mac antiviruses that include this feature. The webcam tool lets you see which applications have access to your Mac’s webcam and gives you the option of banning them. Cybercriminals can easily hijack your webcam with the right malware on your Mac, so it’s useful to be able to monitor this often-overlooked security vulnerability.

Screenshot of how to turn on Kaspersky's webcam protection

I highly recommend checking the “block website tracking” box too

The only problem with Kaspersky is that it collects its users’ data — this makes it a deal-breaker for me. Although you can opt out of its data collection policies, I’m wary of any company that collects its users’ data. Having said that, I’ve found no evidence so far that Kaspersky puts your privacy at risk by selling your data to third parties. In fact, its privacy policy explicitly states that it doesn’t sell data.

Overall, I was disappointed that Kaspersky doesn’t offer as many extras on Mac as it does on Windows. Even so, I can’t deny it’s a good choice for Mac users.

Kaspersky’s shopping and webcam protection complement its core malware scanner. Also, having access to a VPN (albeit limited in capability) is still better than nothing.

Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac is available for 1, 3, or 5 devices, and you can buy the plan for 1 year or 2 years. Subscribing for a year can be a hard decision, so you can test Kaspersky risk-free for 30 days with its money-back guarantee to see if it fits your needs.

Try Kaspersky for your Mac

10. Vipre — Detects Most Mac-Specific Malware but Lacks Features

Key Features:

  • Good detection scores to protect your Mac in real-time
  • User-friendly interface
  • Minimally resource-intensive with little to no impact on Mac’s performance
  • Lacks the essential security features of its Windows app counterpart
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

Vipre is a safe-to-use antivirus that provides ample protection for your Mac. However, it’s missing many important premium features on the macOS app. Vipre gave me a real-time protection score of 98.7% — that’s not perfect, but it’s still above the industry average. It registered 9 false positives, and it was cumbersome to scroll through the list of detected viruses and unselect legitimate files.

The main reason Vipre is at the bottom of my list is that it’s too Windows-focused. Its Mac app isn’t nearly as feature-rich as its Windows app, lacking essential features like a firewall, email filtering, or a file shredder. This lack of extra security features (even on its higher-tier plans) makes it a deal-breaker for me.

Screenshot of Vipre's Mac app dashboard

Vipre’s Mac app is a barebones app lacking most of the features of the Windows app

Apart from its good detection scores, I liked Vipre’s clean and intuitive user interface. But that’s mainly because it has fewer options as compared to the Windows app. I also liked its low impact on my Mac’s performance. My CPU and RAM usage jumped by 13% and 17%, respectively, during a full scan and my Mac didn’t slow down at all.

Vipre offers 4 plans in its portfolio:

  • Antivirus Plus — Only supports Windows devices
  • Advanced Security — Compatible with macOS but lacks features available on the Antivirus Plus plan for Windows devices
  • Ultimate Security — Works on Mac but only Windows users can use advanced functions like a VPN and Privacy Shield
  • Android Security — Only works on Android

I wouldn’t recommend this antivirus if you’re a Mac user but if you’re still adamant, you can try Vipre risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee. Note that the refund policy only applies to Vipre’s antivirus bundles and not its standalone software.

Try Vipre for your Mac

Warning! Avoid These 3 Antivirus Brands for Mac


Airo is a Mac-exclusive antivirus with excellent malware detection rates. However, I’d advise caution when using it. My team and I tested Airo for over a month but during this time, its product and pricing models kept changing. On top of that, all changes were poorly advertised.

I couldn’t understand what Airo was offering until I contacted the customer support team. This doesn’t give me much confidence in the company’s stability or transparency, which isn’t ideal when antivirus is meant to be a trustworthy line of defense to keep you safe.

Avast and AVG

Avast and its subsidiary AVG are popular free antivirus products, but I can’t recommend either of them. Unfortunately, I found that Avast had sold millions of its users’ private browsing data to third-party companies.

Although it did shut down its data-harvesting activities since the incident and now lets users opt out of data collection, I’m still skeptical about the company’s ethics. I don’t think it’s worth compromising your privacy when there are better antiviruses for Mac to choose from.


BullGuard is an excellent antivirus for Windows, but test results for Mac are lackluster. While the Mac app’s core malware protection is quite good, it’s missing almost nearly every feature that’s available on the PC version.

Quick Comparison Table: 2023’s Best Antivirus Software for Mac

Malware Remover Firewall VPN Parental Controls Money-Back Guarantee
Intego 30 days
MacKeeper 14 days
McAfee 30 days
TotalAV 30 days
Norton 360 60 days
Bitdefender 30 days
Panda 30 days
Avira 30 days
Kaspersky 30 days
Vipre 30 days

3 Easy Steps: How to Use an Antivirus for Mac

  1. Choose a plan from a reliable antivirus — Intego is my #1 pick because it’s exclusively built for Mac users from the ground up.
    Screenshot of Intego's premium plan displayed on its website
  2. Buy a subscription plan — Enter your personal information and payment information and proceed to checkout.
    Screenshot of Intego's pre-checkout website page
  3. Activate your license — Insert the activation key you’ve received via email to activate your antivirus software.
    Screenshot of Intego's license activation page
  4. Stay protected by running a full scan of your Mac and removing all detected infections.

How I Tested and Ranked the Best Antivirus for Mac in 2023

I tested a range of different antiviruses to find the best ones for Mac. I used my M1 Macbook Air to examine each antivirus and looked out for the following features.

  • Powerful antivirus engine — My team and I ran extensive tests to ensure each antivirus on my list not only excels at detecting malware but provides perfect or near-perfect real-time protection.
  • Extra features — I considered the number of Mac-specific useful extras each contender offers, such as a firewall, data breach monitoring, parental controls, etc.
  • User-friendly Mac app — I used each software’s Mac app to evaluate its user-friendliness and feature-richness.
  • Value for money — There are several reliable free antivirus options for Mac, so I ensure that every antivirus on my list provides good value for money.
  • Money-back guarantee — I picked out antiviruses that provide a substantial amount of time for users to try their products risk-free

FAQ: Best Antivirus Software for Mac in 2022

Which Mac antivirus software is the best?

Based on my tests, Intego is the #1 antivirus for Mac. It’s not only relatively more affordable than some industry leaders but also exclusively built for Macs. It has an impressive line-up of tools that improve upon some of Apple’s in-built security features. This means you can trust Intego to protect you against the latest Mac-specific threats. You can try Intego risk-free using its money-back guarantee.

Which is the best free antivirus for Mac?

No free antivirus is perfect but luckily, some Mac antivirus versions on my list offer free plans. After thorough tests, I can confidently say that Avira stood out as the best free antivirus you can get for Mac. Avira’s free plan includes superb real-time protection, optimization tools for Mac, web protection browser extension, and more.

Doesn’t Mac already have in-built virus protection?

Yes, Mac has very good in-built security against viruses and other threats but it’s far from foolproof. You still need a top-tier Mac-focused antivirus to protect it from complex threats that macOS can’t handle. macOS comes in-built with:

  • Anti-theft tools — Lets you track your Mac and iOS devices in the event they’re lost or stolen.
  • App review — Checks the legitimacy of Apple Store apps before you download them.
  • Gatekeeper — Scans apps for malicious code before launching them.
  • Web protection — Blocks malicious tracking links and websites while using Safari.

In addition to these features, macOS is built on a sandboxed architecture that helps protect your system in the event of a malware attack. But even with these safeguards, there are still gaps in its security. A good antivirus can help make up for these shortcomings and mitigate the risk of malware, spyware, ransomware, and other threats on your Mac.

Try Intego for your Mac

Don’t Put Your Mac at Risk — Protect It With a High-Quality Antivirus

Mac users often falsely assume they’re perfectly safe from all threats, but that’s far from true. While Macs are generally more secure than Windows devices, macOS still has certain gaps in its security that only a reliable Mac-specific antivirus can fill. It gives you access to premium features for improving its system optimization and online privacy.

Intego is my top recommendation because it’s exclusively built for Macs. It offers powerful real-time protection against Mac-specific malware and excellent backup tools that restore lost files in the event of a ransomware attack. You can try Intego for free for 30 days using its money-back guarantee to see if it suits your security needs.

Summary — Here Are the Best Antivirus Software for Mac in 2023

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