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How to Find Your Mac's MAC Address

Each of your Mac's network interfaces — such as the ethernet and Wi-Fi cards — have a permanent, unique serial number called a media access control (MAC) address. Some universities and employers may request your Mac's MAC addresses to monitor or limit your access to certain networks.

MAC addresses can also be used for less nefarious purposes. For example, if your computer is stolen on a university's campus, the IT department may be able to use its MAC address to trigger an alert when the criminal connects your computer to a university network. For reasons like this, it can be a good idea to find and store your Mac's MAC addresses.

Here's how to find your Mac's MAC address for a network interface:

  1. From the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Select Network.

  3. From the sidebar, select a network interface, such as Wi-Fi. (Remember, every network interface has a different MAC address.) The window shown below appears.

  4. Click Advanced.

  5. Select the Hardware tab. The window shown below appears.

The MAC address for the selected network interface is displayed in the window.

This is important: You should not share your MAC address with anyone except authorized IT personnel. MAC addresses are unique and permanent, but they can also be spoofed by attackers. In a worst-case scenario, a malicious individual could acquire and spoof your MAC address, and you could be blamed for the illegal activity conducted by the malicious individual. So please, protect your MAC addresses!

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Matt Cone, the author of Master Your Mac, has been a Mac user for over 20 years. A former ghost writer for some of Apple's most notable instructors, Cone founded Macinstruct in 1999, a site with OS X tutorials that boasts hundreds of thousands of unique visitors per month. You can email him at: [email protected].


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