Microsoft Just Released An Antivirus App For Macs

Microsoft Defender for Mac finds a malicious file during a scan (Microsoft)

Microsoft’s Iaan D’Souza-Wiltshire penned an announcement heralding the debut of Microsoft Defender for Mac. It’s essentially the same app as Windows Defender on Windows 10. The name needed a tweak, of course, since it’s built for machines that aren’t running Microsoft’s own operating system.

Microsoft Defender offers Mac users the same kind of protection that its Windows counterpart offers Windows users. It provides real-time detection of threats, performs on-demand scans of USB drives, and automatically keeps malware definitions and detection logic up-to-date.

For now, Microsoft Defender is only available as a limited preview. It’s the first step in bringing a whole new group of users under Microsoft’s Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) umbrella.

Surprised to see Microsoft releasing an app like this for Mac computers? Don’t be.

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Just a few months ago we saw a similarly unexpected announcement from Microsoft. The browser that had been purpose-built for Windows 10, Edge, was being torn down and rebuilt and would use the same code that powers Google Chrome for a foundation.

Then Microsoft doubled down on the surprise factor. Not only would the new Edge browser use Google code, but it was also going to run on Macs. Microsoft last released a web browser that ran on Macs way back in 2003.

The two companies have been fierce competitors on numerous fronts over the years, but there have also been some surprising collaborations. The most famous was when Microsoft saved Apple from possible bankruptcy in 1997 with a $150 million investment.

Really, if you wanted to put a social networking label on the relationship between Microsoft and Apple, you’d have to go with “it’s complicated.” Battling the threat of global malware is complicated, too, and it’s great to see that Microsoft isn’t going to let a little rivalry get in the way of that mission.

Lee started writing about software, hardware, and geek culture around the time that the Red Wings last won the Stanley Cup. The two aren’t related in any way, however. When he’s not catching up on tech news or blogging about it, you can find him watching or playing baseball and doing his part to ensure the next generation of geeks is raised properly.

Source: Microsoft Just Released An Antivirus App For Macs

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