Do following real time protection apps for Mac harm Mac technologically or spy after the user?

AVAST, Avira, Sophos, AVG

1 Answer 1


Yes - all of the listed apps harm usability and make Mac OS less secure and less performant in my opinion. Spy on the user is a little vague, so you'd want to examine one product specifically and their data retention / collection / implementation to get a meaningful answer.

I would say you should use Apple's gatekeeper and only run signed / MAS apps if you are thinking free protection is worth your effort or time. You pay Apple for hardware so it's clear why they protect you. If you aren't paying for software, someone else is paying for your data or benefiting so without a compelling reason why you trust that person, my initial reaction is to be overly suspicious of that "free lunch".

  • Hello, Mike! Thank you for the reply! So those apps actually weaken system security? Do You have any advice regarding any real time security app, free or paid as well, that actually give some protection to Mac without hurting it? I'd like to consider all options there are. P.S. Votes with less than 15 rep are recorded but not displayed. I tried to give you vote up, but it won't let me.
    – TiredFred
    Dec 16, 2016 at 11:13
  • Thanks @TiredFred - what specifically are you looking to protect?
    – bmike
    Dec 17, 2016 at 11:28
  • My Mac Mini, El Capitan. I usually avoid all suspicious sites, but having some app that scans in coming files real time would increase safety if it actually does its work. Images, videos, I've also got a lot of stuff from external hard drive to move to this Mac.
    – TiredFred
    Dec 17, 2016 at 12:53

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