Automatic login can be either a useful feature for devices in the workplace… or a vulnerability in your security program.
When you set up a new Mac, or do a clean installation of a new version of macOS, the first thing you do is create a user account. That account is set, by default, to log in automatically at startup.
Convenient, right? Only if you’re working from home 24/7. If you use a laptop and travel for work, this can leave you at a big risk. This automatic login means that anyone who finds your Mac just needs to start it up. They now have access to all your files, including personal and internal emails, or customer data.
You can change this, and tell macOS to display a login screen on boot instead. There are two ways to do this.
As an alternative, you can also change this setting from System Preferences, then clicking the Security & Privacy preferences. If you click on the General tab, you’ll see an option to Disable Automatic Login.
This simple step is one of the many easy things you can do to make yourself more secure at work.
If your company processes or stores customer data, you likely have policies about password-protecting your devices and systems. It’s critical that these information security policies get communicated to employees across the company. But they also need to sign off on their responsibilities and follow the security procedures, like turning off automatic login.
Does your company have a security policy for protecting computers and devices connected to sensitive data?