Think Your Mac System Has a Virus? Know What to Do

Although the Mac virus is rare, it exists. If you are worried your device is infected, this guide will help you. 

How Can You Tell Your System is Infected? 

If you think your Mac screen is being observed or your system has suddenly become laggy and slow, it might be that your device has picked up some malware or virus. Another surefire symptom is the sudden appearance of redundant and annoying ads and pop-up windows. You may even see different applications and toolbars on your system that you don’t remember installing. 

However, it is not always a virus that is to blame. For example, your Mac might run slow because there’s a lack of storage space, or the fans might be making whirring noises because your device is heated up. You must rule these reasons out and find the culprit before taking the next steps. 

Some of the symptoms and signs of viruses and malware you must watch out for are:

  • Your device is suddenly laggy or sluggish in everyday use as if some process or software is running in the background that’s consuming the resources. 
  • You suddenly see a new toolbar and apps in your system that you did not install. 
  • Whenever you try browsing the Internet, your browser unexpectedly redirects you to another search engine. Also, no matter how many times you change the settings, your default browser keeps getting changed automatically. You might be redirected to a site you have not heard of before. 
  • The web pages are full of adverts, and you see more pop-up ads than before. Mostly, they are irrelevant to you, but you cannot stop these ads from popping up. 

If you notice these symptoms, do not panic. You must keep calm and remember not to follow any virus elimination steps displayed on the screen. This is also a virus where the browser flashes your system has been compromised. 

How to Remove Viruses or Malware From Your System?

You can decide to use a Mac antivirus or scanner to eliminate malware or virus from your Mac. The software will scan your system and ensure you are informed of the threats looming over your device. Furthermore, the software will provide recommendations on how to remove the viruses and protect your device in the future. You can also turn on the automatic scanning option, so your system is always scanned for malware and viruses. 

You can take other steps to rid your system of viruses and malware. Some of them are mentioned below. 

Update macOS to The Latest Version

Updating your macOS software to the latest version can often eradicate your problems. In addition, these updates come with improved security features and bug fixes. Therefore, if you continually keep your system updated, it can prevent malware attacks and keep your device safe. 

You can manually update macOS by going to Settings > About This Mac > clicking on Update. Alternatively, you can switch on the automatic update option so that the system will download and install the changes whenever your device is idle, and an update is available. 

  • Find irrelevant processes and apps from the Activity Monitor 

Go to the Activity Monitor and scroll through the list of processes and apps running in the background. If you find unrecognizable programs or apps that are chewing up a lot of the system’s resources, you must immediately remove them. These apps or programs might be malicious software making your system run slower than usual. You can click the X button to force quit those processes so that your device is free of malware.

  • Remove apps from the Downloads folder 

The Downloads folder is an excellent place to start if you wish to remove viruses and malware from your device. You might have accidentally installed some apps or programs from unreliable sources, causing your system to behave differently. So, identify those files in the Downloads folder and delete them. Send them to the Trash, and do not forget to empty the Trash. 

  • Clear browser extensions 

If your web browser is acting funny, it is because you have installed some incompatible extensions or are laden with malware. Go through the list of extensions installed in your browser, and if you see any that you don’t remember downloading, you must immediately remove them. 

For removing browser extensions, go to your browser Settings and click Extensions. You will get a list, and then you can select the ones you wish to remove or delete them. 

The Bottom Line 

Staying safe when browsing online is the number one priority. If your system is infected with a virus or malware, prevent it from spreading. Also, install antivirus software to identify and deal with the culprit quickly. Activate the automatic scan option so your system is continually scanned for new threats.

Andre Nicolas

Andre Nicholas is a blogger and writer who loves to write and share his thoughts about technology.

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