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chris_m_28

Cannot Run a Custom Full Hard Drive Scan on a Mac?

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Dear Support,

I have a Windows PC and always run a Custom Malwarebytes scan on every partition of my hard drive at least twice a month as the Threat scan does not scan the entire hard drive.  I have recently installed Malwarebytes Premium on my father's Mac and I see no custom scan option when I go to Scan and I see no means to scan the entire hard drive.  It appears that Malwarebytes for Mac only runs the much shorter and incomplete Threat Scan.  Is this correct?

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Correct. There isn’t much to be gained on the Mac platform today by adding the overhead necessary to do entire drive scans.

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6 minutes ago, alvarnell said:

Correct. There isn’t much to be gained on the Mac platform today by adding the overhead necessary to do entire drive scans.

Are you suggesting that a 1 GB Mac Hard Drive lacks the space to hide newer forms of Malware or are you merely stating the Mac OS is still not being targeted my Malware to the extent of a Windows PC?  And by the way, the "overhead" is never a problem on my Windows PC because I run a custom full scan while I'm asleep.

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We have just completed running a full hard drive scan on my father's mac and Intego VirusBarrier found 3 infected files which the Malwarebytes 25 minute Threat Scan did not.  We were about to end my father's Intego anti-virus subscription, but I am now convinced that this would only expose his computer to more viruses.  Thank you for the above information.  Have a nice day.

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1 hour ago, chris_m_28 said:

Are you suggesting that a 1 GB Mac Hard Drive lacks the space to hide newer forms of Malware

No not at all. Almost all forms, newer and older, need very little drive space. What is relatively new is where it can be stored. All of the critical areas that the System uses are locked down by System Integrity Protection (SIP), but in observing most all recent attacks, everything is stored in the user space in order not to alert the user by requiring admin approval.

1 hour ago, chris_m_28 said:

are you merely stating the Mac OS is still not being targeted my Malware to the extent of a Windows PC?

That is still true and will probably remain so as long as Apple market share remains at current levels. There has definitely been an increase year to year for the past several years, but still orders of magnitude less. Almost all Mac malware is adware these days, which I think you'll agree is mostly aggravating and not truly malicious.

1 hour ago, chris_m_28 said:

"overhead" is never a problem on my Windows PC because I run a custom full scan while I'm asleep.

In addition to the user overhead, I was referring more of the overhead required by the Malwarebytes development staff to provide a signature based scanner and database for macOS, basically from scratch. 

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15 minutes ago, chris_m_28 said:

We have just completed running a full hard drive scan on my father's mac and Intego VirusBarrier found 3 infected files which the Malwarebytes 25 minute Threat Scan did not. 

Would be nice if those files could be submitted to the Newest Mac Threats forum for analysis and possible adding to the database. 

Malwarebytes strives to disable any malware threats by going after installers and malicious processes. It may leave associated files that have been rendered inert behind.

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11 minutes ago, PaulBostock said:

In regards to the concerns about the Mac version of MB posted on this thread I hope that a staff member of MB responds to them ASAP.

I don't really think that enough information has been provided here for a proper response. The staff would need to analyze those files and obtain detailed logs from the subject computer submitted in order to address those concerns.

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17 minutes ago, PaulBostock said:

With all due respect I really wish that posts on this topic would only refer to the Mac version of MB & not drag references of the windows version into the conversation.

There are differences between the two versions. Referring to the windows version on a Mac posting can get confusing.

In regards to the concerns about the Mac version of MB posted on this thread I hope that a staff member of MB responds to them ASAP.

Thanks

 

 

4 minutes ago, alvarnell said:

I don't really think that enough information has been provided here for a proper response. The staff would need to analyze those files and obtain detailed logs from the subject computer submitted in order to address those concerns.

What I have taken from the above conversation is that Malwarebytes, whether the Mac or the Windows version, can certainly benefit from working alongside a secondary anti-malware program.

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The 3 files that Intego located on my father's Mac were immediately quarantined and 25 minutes ago I deleted them from the quarantine.  I'm afraid that I didn't expect Malwarebytes staff to be terribly concerned with the situation having read the above argument as well as the marketing statement from 25 minutes ago.  Sorry.

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1 minute ago, chris_m_28 said:

Malwarebytes, whether the Mac or the Windows version, can certainly benefit from working alongside a secondary anti-malware program.

I don't disagree with you there (I have at least half a dozen such installed, primarily for testing purposes), but with a couple of cautions:

  • One or two of those secondary anti-malware programs don't play well with Malwarebytes, in fact some refuse to install at all unless you remove all others.
  • Make sure that only one of them is running in real-time / on-access mode. They tend to fight over who gets to scan new or revised files first which can seriously interfere with your computing environment.

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16 minutes ago, alvarnell said:

I don't disagree with you there (I have at least half a dozen such installed, primarily for testing purposes), but with a couple of cautions:

  • One or two of those secondary anti-malware programs don't play well with Malwarebytes, in fact some refuse to install at all unless you remove all others.
  • Make sure that only one of them is running in real-time / on-access mode. They tend to fight over who gets to scan new or revised files first which can seriously interfere with your computing environment.

Thanks for this advice.  I will edit the Mac's anti-malware settings.

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28 minutes ago, PaulBostock said:

Please, The name off this forum thread is "Malwarebytes for Mac Support Forum". Info specific to windows does NOT belong here.  It mixes things up & just causes potential confusion.

Thanks

 

Perhaps a description of how the Mac version of Malwarebytes functions would be sufficient.  (Assuming that it functions dramatically different from the Windows version, I mean.)  I'm not asking for enormous detail here, even a link to an updated FAQ might suffice.  But I'm still leaning towards the view that, for the Mac version of Malwarebytes at least, a secondary malware scanner could be beneficial (with that secondary scanner's real-time protection disabled as noted a comment above).  And I also want to thank those who have taken pains to make clarifications above in this thread.  I'm not trying to attack the Malwarebytes product or the company which develops it.

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"Perhaps a description of how the Mac version of Malwarebytes functions would be sufficient"

 

The pricing page on the MB website gives the major differences  between platforms

 

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35 minutes ago, PaulBostock said:

The pricing page on the MB website gives the major differences  between platforms

Hi PaulBostock,

I'm looking at https://www.malwarebytes.com/pricing and also https://www.malwarebytes.com/pricing/business.  The business pricing page does lay out the the major functions of Malwarebytes.  But regarding any differences in the Mac and Windows versions or how they protect a computer, all I'm able to see is "Works for any (mix and match): Windows, Mac."  Is this what you are referring to or am I missing it?  Thanks.

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3 hours ago, chris_m_28 said:

Hi PaulBostock,

I'm looking at https://www.malwarebytes.com/pricing and also https://www.malwarebytes.com/pricing/business.  The business pricing page does lay out the the major functions of Malwarebytes.  But regarding any differences in the Mac and Windows versions or how they protect a computer, all I'm able to see is "Works for any (mix and match): Windows, Mac."  Is this what you are referring to or am I missing it?  Thanks.

I was looking at the personal pricing page

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Hello to All:

From a very knowledgeable insider's perspective regarding macOS malware, Malwarebytes' Director of Mac & Mobile, Mr. Thomas Reed should be asked to weigh in on @chris_m_28's deeper questions involving the proprietary functional operation of Malwarebytes for Mac versus current cybersecurity threat trends.

Thank you.

cc: @treed

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34 minutes ago, GuruGuy said:

Lot of windows product info in here and the question is about the Mac version.  Someone from the Mac side should weigh in here with more info than is in the FAQ

I agree, but I doubt that anyone from MB will be posting anything till after Labour Day.

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36 minutes ago, PaulBostock said:

concrete answers given by MB staff to the Mac questions raised.

I've gone back through this discussion for the umpteenth time and cannot for the life of me figure out what these "@chris_m_28's deeper questions involving the proprietary functional operation of Malwarebytes for Mac versus current cybersecurity threat trends" are if they weren't covered by https://www.malwarebytes.com/pricing/ which outlines the functionality as:

Quote

Remediation
Cleans infected device(s)
Protection
Prevents virus, spyware, and malware infections
Stops ransomware attacks
Schedule scans to run automatically
Automatic protection updates

If there are concerns from the OP concerning Mac current cybersecurity threat trends, perhaps he could clearly state what those are?

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18 minutes ago, GuruGuy said:

no clear answer from someone at MB on what the Mac version does...the pricing page lacks many details

OK, I suppose that's fair (although that particular post was solely focused on the Windows version). I'll be happy to try and provide any additions answers to specific questions you may have on the functional list I gave, pending the return of the staff next week.

I've been a user and tester of the product from it's earliest beginnings, long before it even came to Malwarebytes. Of course it's been totally re-written since then, with dozens of enhancements, so I can't give you the much from the developers perspective, but am still willing to provide what I can.

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My point is that there have not been any follow-on questions posed by the OP beyond Post #26, so, unless he still has additional questions, the discussion should be closed and if others require answers to additional questions, then feel free to start a new topic containing your questions.

Edited by alvarnell

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On 8/30/2019 at 5:19 PM, chris_m_28 said:

It appears that Malwarebytes for Mac only runs the much shorter and incomplete Threat Scan.  Is this correct?

Malwarebytes for Mac does not scan the entire hard drive, because there's really no need to do so. It scans a dynamic set of locations defined by the current rules.

Although we certainly could do full disk scans - and probably will add that feature at some point in the future - it would add very little at the present time. We have been focusing our efforts on areas where we can do more to protect users, like the new App Block feature, which blocks execution of processes by code signature. That has been highly effective, much more so than the addition of full disk scanning would be. It's important to us to do what is needed to best protect our users, and that does not always mean mirroring Mac and Windows feature-for-feature.

The Mac threat landscape is very different from that on Windows. Thus, it's a mistake to think a one-size-fits-all solution, where the same technology is used across all platforms, is the best way to protect everyone. It's important to expend resources where they are most needed for the platform in question, and as a result, every platform we support runs a solution built specifically for that platform and its needs.

Regarding things not detected by Malwarebytes for Mac, I'd encourage you to submit such things in the future to the Newest Mac Threats forum in the future, as was previously mentioned, so that we can improve. There will always be things missed by every antivirus program... anyone who tries to tell you otherwise and claim that a solution is 100% effective is lying to you. If such a thing were possible, we'd all be out of a job by now, because malware would no longer be effective, and thus would no longer exist.

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