For many people, antivirus for macOS is an idea that does not make sense, but Microsoft does not think so. The company has just announced a preview of Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) for Mac, an antivirus that has the same mold as Windows Defender. Except it will not be available to all users, at least not initially.
In fact, the software focuses on corporate users. Microsoft Defender ATP will be available to businesses and other organizations, and will be part of the Microsoft 365 enterprise suite of solutions including Office 365, Windows 10 and Enterprise Mobility + Security tools.
Even so, it sounds strange that an anti-virus for macOS has been put into this package. But Microsoft says the primary goal is to serve businesses that use both Macs and PCs. A unified security solution should make it easier for IT departments to work with the company’s understanding.
This is also another move by Microsoft towards a cross-platform strategy. Jared Spataro, corporate vice president of Microsoft for Office and Windows, compares the novelty to the company’s decision to bring Office to the iPad and Android, an idea that ended up being well accepted in the market.
Microsoft Defender ATP is being made available for MacOS Mojave, MacOS High Sierra and Sierra MacOS for the moment in a closed program (requires registration), and will be updated through Microsoft AutoUpdate for Mac.
Microsoft has not made it clear whether it intends to release Defender ATP for home users at some point.