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Can't open Sourcetree because Apple cannot check it for malicious software

Ben_Mach January 27, 2020

Just downloaded Sourcetree 4.0.1 from the Sourcetree website and received the following message - "Sourcetree' can’t be opened because Apple cannot check it for malicious software."

Note - I am running macOS 10.15.2. 

3 answers

1 accepted

9 votes
Answer accepted
Ben_Mach January 27, 2020

Solution that helped me 

1) open 'system preferences' 

2) navigate to 'security & privacy' 
3) allow the use of Sourcetree

Boris Yurkevich February 23, 2020

That is not a good and potentially very dangerous solution.

The only right solution is to move download app into the Trash and contact Atlassian. This build can be compromised and was not notarised. It's very easy to notarise application with Apple in automated fashion. Atlassian should fix this.

Like # people like this
Seth Cottam June 26, 2020

"The only right solution is to move download app into the Trash and contact Atlassian". That is non-solution.

Whenever the advice is to not use a viable product until they meet someone else's demands, then feel free to disregard. Whether or not you trust the brand and product is more important than whether or not it meets the demands of a 3rd party (Apple).

The number of excellent products that are not notarized with Apple is staggering. It's a nice extra step, that provides greater confidence in the implementation of some security precautions and features, but it's far from necessary.

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chris.kuipers June 30, 2020

Do you know what is staggering? The fact that Atlassian still has not solved this issue after at least half a year! The last update of Sourcetree is from januari this year.

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Joshua Smith November 23, 2020

The solution is to validate the download with the hash provided by Atlassian… Atlassian doesn't provide any way to validate?! The trash looks like the best solution to me too. If, however, the trash isn't an option, then you can "right-click" (two finger tap, control-click, or right-click) the app, choose "Open", then click "Open" on the window that appears.

I can understand a company choosing not to use Apple's validation, even a company as big as Atlassian; but I don't understand them also not having their own validation.

Like # people like this
karsten.rohweder December 17, 2020

Sourcetree is handling our company's most precious assets - our app's source code. I need to be able to trust it, and notarization is an integral part of the macOS trust and security system. It's ridiculous that after one year, this hasn't been addressed yet. I'm switching to another git client.

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Boris Yurkevich December 18, 2020

I’ve been using Tower for more than a month now both at home and at work, it’s been treating me well.

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April 13, 2024

It's a common issue on macOS Catalina and later versions where apps not verified by Apple prompt security concerns. Your solution to manually allow Sourcetree in 'Security & Privacy' settings is spot-on and typically resolves the issue for most users.

If anyone else encounters this, they can follow the steps you outlined:

Open 'System Preferences'.
Navigate to 'Security & Privacy'.
Click 'Allow' next to the message about Sourcetree.
It’s also a good idea to make sure you download software from trusted sources. For unrelated tools offer solutions, but always ensure to verify the authenticity and security of any software.

0 votes
JeremyC February 26, 2022

I'm having this issue again with


Is this issue known to be occurring for that version?

JeremyC February 26, 2022

Oh Atlassian just declines to certify?!  Seems sketch.

0 votes
Boris Yurkevich June 23, 2021

It seams that notarisation issue was resolved. I just tested the version 4.1.2 (238) and I was able to open the app in a normal way. 

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