Tips for Protecting Your Privacy on Your MacBook

Privacy on Your MacBook

Last Updated on July 5, 2024 by Team Experts

Privacy on Your MacBook, For any computer scientist, a laptop is their most prized possession. Practically, their whole professional or student life revolves around it. If you’re a computer science student, you can relate to it immensely. However, if you’re not, allow us to tell you what it’s like. From the day you become a computer science student, you’re asked to do programming assignments day and night to get the hang of it. 

Followed by numerous project deadlines and various new software that may make your life easier in future, but for now, they can become a huge headache when you have to learn their usage. So, in short, for every task, a reliable laptop is a must for you and if God forbid, your deadline is looming over your head, and your laptop decides to give you a hard time simultaneously, your life may very well hang in the balance. 

Privacy on your MacBook, Using a MacBook is no less than a challenge itself. Sure, there are plenty of reasons to use it; however, it can take some time to get used to it. In fact, we’d suggest you first try using a friend’s MacBook; if you find yourself liking it, then get your own. But, the first step after getting your own MacBook is to safeguard it against any possible threats and unauthorized access.  Allow us to inform you of plenty of hijinks that’ll keep your MacBook safe and sound from any and all sorts of intruders.

Safekeeping 101

Privacy on your MacBook, First of all, your macOS user guide should allow you to set up your privacy in such a way that you’ll be good to go. It will tell you about all the basic steps you need to opt for to keep your MacBook safe and in fact, for a while, you will probably be fine. The basics would include using strong passwords for all your accounts, ones that are not easily guessable such as personal information from your life, i.e. first pet name, your date of birth etc. For such things can easily come up in casual conversations and you might unconsciously mention them. 

Other than that, if you’re letting other people use your Mac when you have sensitive information stored, you ought to ask them to use the password-protected guest account. If they tend to use it frequently, assign them a separate account altogether for future use. This way, you can keep your work life separate from your friend’s work and also make your data inaccessible for prying eyes.

When you’re not using your MacBook you can configure the settings in such a way that when your system is idle, it can log itself out and require an authentic password for the sleep mode to be reawakened. Not only that, your Administrator privileges should allow you to limit access from other users by password protecting the important files. You can also keep an eye on the other users and the settings; for instance, if you’re perturbed by some other user’s activities, i.e. downloading possibly malicious software, you can simply delete the said account. 

Enhance the security measures

Privacy on your MacBook, Every once in a while, Apple introduces a new operating system for Mac. Now, it can come laden with exciting updates and features; however, don’t get carried away so quickly. You mustn’t disregard your MacBook’s privacy configurations. For instance, when you install the new macOS, you are asked to create an account; in the process of doing that, you may set the settings to log in automatically. While it can be easy to access at home, you might want to uncheck that box when you’re on the go. If an unknown person is to find your MacBook unlocked, it can be quite risky, for you never know what they intend to do. Better yet, integrate your iCloud account and use that password to log in as it doesn’t enable automatic login.

If you have Mac OS X, you should be able to access one of the finest security features that are File Vault. It is a disk encryption program that’s only available to Mac users. It allows you to encrypt your most sensitive files using password protection and thus, such files wouldn’t be accessible unless the right password is keyed in. They can’t even be copied or much less seen. That ought to help you secure your MacBook.  

Another feature that’s particularly helpful is the iCloud Keychain. For those of you who are hearing about it for the first time, it is a password management system that comes equipped on iOS devices. It tracks all your personal information across all your iOS devices and syncs them to store your usernames and passwords so that you don’t have to remember every single one of your strong yet complicated passwords, much like how Google Chrome prompts you to do it for you. The only difference being is that you’ll have to remember just one master password so that you can access the rest of your complicated passwords. 

Don’t trust blindly

Privacy on your MacBook, Keep no doubt Apple equips its devices with the best networking security. However, with the malicious attacks evolving every other day, there’s only so much protection Apple can provide. Pay attention because we’re teaching you how to handle such threats all on your own. 

Given the fact that your MacBook ought to have an inbound firewall, it will shield your MacBook against certain threats only. Now, it’s not completely useless; it’ll protect your data but to a certain extent. However, prevention is better than care. 

So, on the basis of that, you should download an outbound firewall that will go hand-in-hand with the existing firewall of MacBook. Because oftentimes, you might accidentally download malware and that could lead to leakage of confidential information to the internet and by the time you realize the damage would already be done. By downloading a two-way firewall like Intego NetBarrier or Little Snitch, you’d be preventing such an incident from occurring in the first place. 

Lately, to tighten its security, Apple has introduced System Integrity Protection (SIP) in macOS. Now, if you’re an iOS developer, you might find yourself at odds with this security feature because although it has been placed for your own safety but it might most likely hinder your work process. 

For you see, this feature bars any other apps or codes that are unauthorized by its system. Thus, if you’re working on an app, you’d need to manually authorize the said app or disable SIP for a certain time being, but you must enable it as soon as you’re done with your app testing; otherwise, you’d be exposing your MacBook to malicious threats. 

Limit your digital footprint

Privacy on your MacBook, While downloading apps or software, we often agree to a bunch of terms and conditions without care as to who bothers going through them thoroughly. In doing so, we also grant permissions unknowingly. If you’d open up your Mac’s Security and Privacy panel, you’ll see the number of software that has access to various settings such as, i.e. location, audio, camera etc. Now, you want to take note of your ‘Location services’ in particular. 

For instance, if you’ve granted permission to locate your device through ‘Find my’ or ‘Maps’, then it’d make sense. However, if any other app or software is using your location, it might be a reason to be alarmed. So you might want to revoke permissions for the ‘Location’ of such apps. You’ll probably be asked to enter the administrator password to make authorized changes duly.

Another related issue could be that of trackers. Many websites often used ‘trackers’ to gather every visiting user’s information. They could collect data, build profiles, and possibly sell them to advertisers. Now it’s understandable you’d rather not be part of such data gathering unwillingly. For this purpose, Apple’s Safari browser comes equipped with Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP). It is a privacy feature that limits other websites from storing information about you. 

Instead of being hesitant, you can visit any website and your information won’t be tracked. All you need to do is open the Safari browser, go to Preferences, then Privacy and enable Prevent cross-site tracking. Thus, you’ll be cloaked while visiting websites. Not only that, there will be a complete list of statistics as in a list of websites followed by the number of trackers used by the said website. 

Keep tabs on your Mac

Suppose it were to be said that macOS comes with its plethora of issues that won’t be so wrong. Because despite all efforts, Mac, like any other operating system, is prone to threats and malware attacks. So, your best bet would be to keep a vigilant eye and to notice even the slightest of abnormalities. Furthermore, you must keep an eye out for software updates. Make sure you keep every single software up-to-date, whether big or small. Because you never know which software update might make a difference in becoming a wall between your precious content and any probable threat. 

To check whether your macOS is recently updated or not, you may go to System Preferences followed by Software Update. To make changes to the existing setting, you may browse through Advanced. Now, you may opt for automatically updating the software as it seems far easier than having to look up software updates every now and then. However, if in case something goes wrong, you wouldn’t know which update caused the error. That’s why it is best to download updates; however, update them manually. So that you can ensure nothing gets corrupted. 

Don’t risk it

Privacy on your MacBook, Let’s take a quick trip of other things that can keep your MacBook safe. As mentioned previously, the ‘Find My’ app can come quite in handy, especially when you’ve misplaced it. For instance, you’re a law student and even got a law essay writing service to write an essay for you to submit. However, since your last class, you can’t seem to recall where your MacBook might be. In such a case, you can use any iOS device and track your MacBook. Or, just in case, if it gets stolen, you’ve got the option of backing up everything on the MacBook in a safe space and wipe it all so the culprit can’t get away with your data. 

Now, let’s talk about software. Computer studies 101 teaches every student how important an antivirus can be. Just like other computers, Mac can also make do with antivirus software. Every day you’re exchanging a bunch of files and downloading various other software; hence, having an activated antivirus on the side is a good way to shield your MacBook.

For Mac, you can use VirusBarrier. It is a trusted antivirus that guards your Mac against attacks through another Mac and PCs. Other than that, using VPN software can also give you an edge while using your MacBook through public Wi-Fi, such as an airport or a coffee shop. By masking your IP address, you can mislead website trackers. Not only that, when you’re using a VPN, even your ISP won’t be able to keep tabs on your browser history. 

Another way through which you can avoid attracting malware and viruses to your MacBook is by not sharing files that might be illegal in nature. Not just files, you should also avoid downloading pirated software because it may very likely corrupt your system or cause harm to it somehow. 

One more key takeaway is that you should always keep a backup of all your important files elsewhere, which also goes without saying. Yet many people fail to do that and it can lead to quite a crisis. So, for this purpose, you have Intego Personal Backup, through which you can schedule automatic backups so that you can recover your data in case something goes awry.  

There you have it. Privacy on your MacBook, A piece from us to guide you on how to safeguard your MacBook. Make sure you follow at least a few of these measures so that you don’t regret them later on. 

Also read about: How To Fix Common MacBook Problems

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Anil is an enthusiastic, self-motivated, reliable person who is a Technology evangelist. He's always been fascinated at work especially at innovation that causes benefit to the students, working professionals or the companies. Being unique and thinking Innovative is what he loves the most, supporting his thoughts he will be ahead for any change valuing social responsibility with a reprising innovation. His interest in various fields and the urge to explore, led him to find places to put himself to work and design things than just learning. Follow him on LinkedIn

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