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Security Tutorials

Enabling Firmware Password Protection on Your Mac

[Editor's Note: This is an excerpt from Master Your Mac, a new book for Mac users who want to travel beyond the basics. Click here to learn more about the book!]

How to Set File Permissions in Mac OS X

Mac OS X uses permissions to restrict access to applications, files, and folders. Utilizing this security control can help protect your data from unauthorized access. Whether you use your Mac in public places or share it with other users, you may want to change the permissions on your documents to ensure the confidentiality and integrity of your data.

How to Configure Your Mac's Firewall

Every Mac ships with a built-in firewall - a service that can be configured to disallow information from entering your Mac. But what is a firewall, and why do you need to use it on your Mac?

Firewall Crash Course

How to Password Protect Your Mac

Your computer contains personal documents, photos, email messages, and even a log of your Internet activities. Password protecting your Mac keeps this private information safe and allows you to control who accesses your computer. You should follow these steps whether you you work primarily from work, home, or a cafe. No one should ever have unauthorized access to your Mac!

Here's how to password protect your Mac:

How to Disable Automatic Login

When you set up your Mac for the first time, you create an administrator account that automatically logs in when you turn on your computer - a convenient feature that poses a major security risk if you regularly use your Mac in public, or if other people use your computer. For maximum security, you’ll want to disable automatic login, even if you’re the only person who uses your Mac.

  1. From the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Select Security & Privacy.

  3. Click the General tab.

How to Create User Accounts in Mac OS X

Everyone who uses your Mac should have his or her own account. It’s a practical way to keep personal documents, settings, and applications separate and secure. Plus, an account limits a user’s ability to access system files and settings that can change your Mac’s configuration.

Creating User Accounts in Mac OS X

Here’s how to create an account for a user:

  1. From the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Select Users & Groups.

Make an Encrypted Disk Image to Secure Files

Encryption satisfies one of the most basic, fundamental human needs: The right to privacy. By using encryption, you can be reasonably confident that your files will be protected from prying eyes. This is especially important if you work on computers that are shared with others, or if you frequent high-traffic computing environments, such as computer labs.

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