How to allow permissions for Avast Security | Avast

Allowing all permissions for Avast Security on macOS

After installing or upgrading Avast Security, Avast Premium Security, or Avast Omni on a Mac that is running macOS version 10.13 (High Sierra) or higher, you need to allow permissions so that your Avast product can fully protect your system. The Avast setup wizard guides you through this process. For detailed instructions, refer to the steps in this article.

You need to allow permissions if you see any of the following messages in your Avast product:
  • This Mac is not fully protected
  • This Mac is in passive mode
  • To turn on this shield, you need to first allow us to protect you

Allow protection

Allowing permissions enables Avast to protect your Mac using the Core Shields real-time protection features.

  1. In the Avast setup wizard, click Continue.
  2. Click Open System Preferences.
  3. Select the General tab in the Security & Privacy preferences window.
  4. If your settings are locked, click the lock icon, then enter your Administrator Password and click Unlock.
  5. Click Allow.
  6. In the Avast setup wizard, click Continue.

The necessary permissions are granted. If you are using macOS 11 (Big Sur), the Avast setup wizard prompts you to add DNS proxy configurations. If you are using macOS 10.15 (Catalina) or lower, the Avast setup wizard prompts you to allow full disk access.

Add DNS proxy configurations

Adding a DNS proxy to your Mac enables Avast to actively monitor websites for threats while you browse the internet.

  1. Click Open confirmation dialog.
  2. Click Allow.
  3. Click Continue.

The necessary DNS proxy configurations are added. Continue with the steps below to allow full disk access.

Allow full disk access

Allowing full disk access enables Avast to scan your entire Mac for hidden threats.

  1. In the Avast setup wizard, click Open System Preferences.
  2. Ensure the Privacy tab and Full Disk Access are selected.
  3. If your settings are locked, click the lock icon, then enter your Administrator Password and click Unlock.
  4. Select your Avast product using either method below:
    1. Tick the box next to your Avast product.
    2. Click the + plus icon, then select your Avast product, and click Open.
  5. If prompted, click Quit Now.
  6. Click Continue.
  7. Click Got it.

Full Disk Access is granted for your Avast product. All necessary permissions are now enabled.

Troubleshooting

In some cases, a problem with macOS prevents enabling the necessary permissions. This mainly affects macOS 10.13 High Sierra and macOS 10.14 Mojave. If you are unable to allow the permissions as described in this article, try one of the troubleshooting options below:

Update macOS

Updating to macOS 10.15 Catalina or macOS 11 Big Sur should resolve the issue. For instructions, refer to the following Apple Support article:

Reinstall macOS

For instructions to reinstall your macOS, refer to the following Apple Support article:

Fix manually (advanced users)

If updating or reinstalling macOS is not possible for you, you can try to fix the issue manually by following the instructions below. These steps were reported on the White Hat Mac website, where you can read more about the issue and proposed solution:

Based on the White Hat Mac article, we recommend first identifying which directory is affected by the issue, before fixing the access rights.

Identify affected directory

  1. Click Go on the left side of the menu bar, then select Utilities.
  2. Double-click Terminal in the Utilities window.
  3. In the Terminal window, type:

    ls -alO /Library/StagedExtensions

    Ensure you have correctly entered the command, then press Enter.
  4. In the output, check for the following code:

    drwxr-xr-x@ 4 root wheel restricted

    If you see only drwxr-xr-x@ 4 root wheel without the restricted text, then the Staged Extensions directory is affected and you can try to fix the access rights for this directory.

    If you see no such file or directory, continue with the steps below to check the Kernel Extension Management directory.
  5. In the Terminal window, type:

    ls -alO /private/var/db/KernelExtensionManagement/

    Ensure you have correctly entered the command, then press Enter.
  6. In the output, check for the following code:

    drwxr-xr-x@ 4 root wheel restricted

    If you see only drwxr-xr-x@ 4 root wheel without the restricted text, then your Kernel Extension Management directory is affected and you can try to fix the access rights for this directory.

Fix access rights

The instructions below require executing a command in recovery mode and are intended only for advanced users. Customizations of your system settings, missing a step, or performing a step incorrectly can change a system setup that could prevent your Mac from starting properly and you could suffer a potential loss of data. Use these instructions at your own risk!
  1. Click the Apple icon on the left side of the menu bar, then select Restart.
  2. Immediately hold down the ⌘ Command key and R key simultaneously until you see the Apple logo.
  3. When the macOS Utilities window appears, click Utilities in the menu bar, then select Terminal.
  4. In the Terminal window, type the relevant code below according to which directory was missing the restricted tag:
    • Staged Extensions:

      chflags restricted /V*/*/private/var/db/StagedExtensions
    • Kernel Extension Management:

      chflags restricted /V*/*/private/var/db/KernelExtensionManagement
    Ensure you have correctly entered the command, then press Enter.
  5. Click the Apple icon on the left side of the menu bar, then select Restart.

You should now be able to allow all permissions in Avast Security by following the instructions in this article. If you continue to experience problems, contact Avast Support.

Further recommendations

For more information about the features available in your Avast product, refer to the relevant article below:

  • Avast Security 14.6 for Mac and higher
  • Avast Premium Security 14.6 for Mac and higher
  • Avast Omni 1.x for Mac
  • Apple macOS 11 (Big Sur)
  • Apple macOS 10.15.x (Catalina)
  • Apple macOS 10.14.x (Mojave)
  • Apple macOS 10.13.x (High Sierra)

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