How to Disable Automatic Login in macOS

Posted on August 5, 2020 - by Kyle Hankins - in Building Your InfoSec Program

A guide for disabling automatic login on a Mac.

Automatic login is designed to be a time-saving convenient feature for Mac users. It allows the user to simply open the laptop and gain full access to its systems and files with no authentication or password required. 

For people casually using their laptop, this is a security issue. If anyone out there can get physical access to your laptop, then they have total control of all the data and files stored on your personal computer. This includes passwords that can give them access to further accounts and other networks/systems. 

This vulnerability might be worrisome for a home laptop user, but an employee who has access to the company’s files, data, and network, should be absolutely concerned about this feature. Password protection is critical for keeping confidential and vital data safe, especially customer data and email access to company financial accounts, etc.

Company security policies may require disabling automatic login on your computer, to remove the opportunity for that feature to put the company’s data at risk.

The following tasks walk you through the brief step-by-step process of disabling automatic login on your Mac.

Disable Automatic Login on macOS

1. Open System Preferences. 

2. Click Users & Groups.

3. There is an option to turn Automatic login On or Off. Set it to Off.

This simple step is one of the many easy things you can do to make yourself more secure at work.

Improving Security Awareness and Compliance in Your Company

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?


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