Microsoft unveils a ‘dedicated’ Windows Defender for macOS

macos gets microsoft defender atp

Microsoft grants macOS dedicated antivirus software termed “Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection” to offer full virus and threat protection, plus the ability to launch full, quick, and custom scans. The software giant is also delivering its AutoUpdate software to ensure that all client machines – running the macOS- Mojave, High Sierra, or Sierra – are up to date.

Macs may be significantly less vulnerable than Windows machines given that it uses techniques like sandboxing and system-level checks before allowing third-party apps to be installed in the device. However, this doesn’t guarantee that they are completely immune. Malware attacks like fake Flash Player installers and cryptocurrency-stealing browser apps only prove that there are ways circumventing the aforementioned protections.

The risk is doubled when the environment has a mix of both Windows PCs and Macs. For this reason, Microsoft is particularly targeting such enterprises offering a mixed-platform environment, because, in that case, everyone needs to make their own assessment. “Today, we’re announcing our advances in cross-platform next-generation protection and endpoint detection and response coverage with a new Microsoft solution for Mac,” told Eric Avena from the Microsoft Tech Community.

“We’ve been working closely with industry partners to enable Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) customers to protect their non-Windows devices while keeping a centralized "single pane of glass" experience… we are going a step further by adding our own solution to the options, starting with a limited preview today,” he added.

The new ATP, however, is limited to businesses and it’s still unclear if Microsoft is working on a consumer version of Defender over to Mac. On the other side, the Windows Defender ATP is a built right into the Windows 10 OS, thus offering antivirus protection by default.