Software security specialists Sophos has announced the availability of a free Mac anti-virus product for Mac home users.

Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition for Mac is available free to Mac users without a time limit, and requiring no registration.

The free software promises to protect against all known malware, including both Mac and Windows-specific threats such as Trojan horses, viruses, worms and spyware.

Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition for Mac has been released in response to growing concern about Mac malware, the company insists.  

"Many Mac home users are not very good at running security on their Macs. By giving it away free, we hope that this encourages Mac users to protect their Macs and keep them as beautiful on the inside as they are on the outside. We have designed this software to be easy to use, simple to install and run quietly in the background," Carole Theriault, senior security consultant at Sophos tells Macworld.
"Today, threats that target Macs are much fewer in number when compared to Windows, but with the Mac market share on the rise, we know from experience that it will be become a more attractive platform for the bad guys to target. Our thinking is why wait until the proverbial poo hits the fan?"

In a recent Sophos investigation into attitudes about Mac security, which surveyed 640 people, revealed that 95 per cent of those questioned expect Macs to be increasingly targeted by malware in the future.

Apple's growing market share makes Mac an increasingly attractive platform for malware authors and hackers to target insists the software provider.

Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition provides automatic on-access detection that runs in the background, which means Mac users don’t need to run any manual scans to be protected against the millions of viruses, worms, spyware and Trojans inexistence.  

Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition for Mac

Sophos adds, strong disinfection capabilities make it easy to clean-up an infection should malware already be in place.

"While most businesses recognise the importance of protecting their Mac computers from malware threats, most home users do not," said Chris Kraft, product management vice president at Sophos.  

"By offering free industrial-strength security to home users, we aim to protect Mac users against today's and tomorrow's Mac threats.  Everyone knows that Macs are beautiful computers - Sophos wants to lend a hand to keep them that way."

Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition is Universal and requires Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger or later.
Mac users can visit to learn more and download Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition.

Additionally, Sophos has also launched a dedicated Mac support forum to allow users to interact with others in their community and get questions answered about the product or Mac security:

Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition for Mac is billed as being backed by Sophos Labs, the global network of highly skilled researchers and analysts at Sophos, protecting businesses from known and emerging malware.

According to the company, more than 100 million users in 150 countries rely on Sophos as the protection against complex threats and data loss.