Must-have Mac OS X Software to Protect Your Mac Computer

From the moment I first started using MacOS X, I fell in love.  It was like my long-time favorite Macintosh <= v9 had spawned with my other love, NeXTStep, to create an exquisite underlying

The Jurassic Park scene where the girl says “This is a UNIX system! I know this!”?  That was me…

In high school, I had read a *NIX book during detention (There was a time when I just didn’t like going to class…), and I consider that experience to be one of the defining moments of my life.

UNIX System Administration HandbookQ

I had been coding sprites since I lost my first teeth, learned BASIC and was already on IRC and BBS’s, but UNIX was a gloriously complex and special thing.  We didn’t have Linux back then really, People primarily used FreeBSD and some of the other commercial distros.

I still consider myself a System V fangirl, after paying many years of dues in UNIX Technical Operations for a large managed hosting company.  That’s how I got into security, so I’m really a paranoid UNIX admin who happened upon security.

But I digress.  UNIX is awesome. And MacOS + *NIX is even awesome-r.

Mac OS X is extremely secure to begin with, with fantastic built-in features such as full-disk encryption with FileVault, a firewall, many sharing and other more risky features disabled by default, and GateKeeper for application protection.

The standard features are great for most people, but remember – I’m paranoid. Security can generally always be improved for any device, system, solution, etc.

When I install a fresh copy of MacOS X, there are certain pieces of software that I absolutely must install, and most are security tools.

I’ve compiled a list of the security software I tend to install on every Mac I use.  These vary from network firewalls to monitoring of specific IOCs (indicators of compromise).

I’m not affiliated with any of these companies (that I know of), these are just awesome tools I recommend.

You’re perfectly okay only using stock Mac OS X, as these tools are mostly monitoring tools for the truly paranoid.  E.g. The Mac OS X Firewall works perfectly fine, but there are tools that offer additional functionality. These tools may also adversely affect performance, because they are constantly watching.

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