OS X Yosemite: Setting up your Mac to be secure

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Setting up your Mac to be secure

Here are some things you can do to make your Mac use more secure.

Use secure passwords

To keep your information safe, you should use passwords to secure your Mac, and choose passwords that can’t be easily guessed, see Tips for creating secure passwords. For more information, see Understand passwords.

Require users to log in

If others can get physical access to your Mac, you should set up separate users for each person using the Mac, and require each user to log in. This prevents an unauthorized person from using the Mac. It also separates user files, so a user only has access to their own personal files and settings. Users cannot see or modify the files or settings belonging to other users. For more information, see Set up users on your Mac.

Secure your Mac when it’s idle

You can set your Mac up to lock when it goes to sleep after being inactive for a certain period of time, see Set your Mac to log out when not in use. You should also require a password to wake it from sleep, see Require a password after waking your Mac. For convenience, you can set up a hot corner to click whenever you want to immediately lock your screen, see Use hot corners to start your screen saver.

Limit the number of administrative users

One or more people on the Mac can have administrator privileges for a Mac. By default the administrator is the person who initially set up the Mac.

Administrators can create, manage, and delete other users, install and remove software, and change the Mac’s settings. For these reasons, an administrator should create a standard user to work in when administrator privileges are not needed. If the security of a standard user is compromised, the potential harm is far more limited than if the user has administrator privileges. If multiple people use your Mac, limit the number of users with administrator privileges. For more information, see Set up users on your Mac.

Encrypt the data on your Mac with FileVault

If you have private or confidential information on your Mac, you can use FileVault encryption to protect that information from being seen or copied. FileVault encodes the information stored on your Mac so it is locked and cannot be read unless a password is entered.

For more information, see About FileVault encryption.

Published Date: Sep 14, 2017