Mac Threat Landscape 2020
Security company Malwarebytes saw a significant rise in the overall prevalence of threats on computers running macOS in 2019, with an increase of over 400 percent from 2018. However, since you could argue—validly—that part of this was due to a corresponding increase in the total number of macOS devices running Malwarebytes software, it’s more interesting to look at the change in the number of detections per endpoint. Mac detections per endpoint increased from 4.8 in 2018 to a whopping 11.0 in 2019, a figure that is nearly double the same statistic for Windows.
This means that the average number of threats detected on a Mac is not only on the rise, but has surpassed Windows—by a great deal. This is likely because, with increasing market share in 2019, Macs became more attractive targets to cybercriminals. In addition, macOS’ built-in security systems have not cracked down on adware and PUPs to the same degree that they have malware, leaving the door open for these borderline programs to infiltrate.
Further, for the first time ever, Mac threats appeared at the top of Malwarebytes’ overall threat detections. Two Mac threats—NewTab and PCVARK—showed up in second and third place in our list of the most prevalent detections across all platforms.
This is why Patient Computer Help, Inc. recommends installing Malwarebytes for Mac and our associated Apple device management system from Addigy. Together, threats are blocked and your computer is monitored for issues that could hurt your productivity or your data.
Note: If you’re wondering about your iPhone or iPad, malware exists, but there’s no way to scan for it. Most iOS malware is nation-state malware, spread via targeted attacks through iOS vulnerabilities, such as NSO’s Pegasus spyware. China has used this against the Uyfgur people.