Threat identity (IDE) files: overview

  • Article ID: 10350
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  • Updated: 11 Oct 2013

This article provides information on identity files.

First seen in

Sophos Endpoint Security and Control

What are threat identity (IDE) files?

IDE files contain threat identities which allow Sophos Anti-Virus to detect and disinfect the latest malicious software and other threats.

  • When Sophos AutoUpdate is installed IDE files automatically update.
  • IDE files are a supplement to regular engine and full threat updates, and not a replacement.
  • For full protection you must use Sophos Anti-Virus with the current engine version plus all of the latest IDE files (which 'top up' the virus engine).

Which platform (operating systems) use IDE files?

Sophos Anti-Virus IDE files are cross-platform. All operating system versions of Sophos Anti-Virus can use the same IDE files.

Where necessary, for example with emergency command lines scanners, and older versions of Sophos Anti-Virus (e.g. OpenVMS), you can download and add IDE files manually.

Keeping Sophos Anti-Virus versions up to date

After one month the current IDE files are rolled up into the virus engine to speed up scanning times.

Therefore Sophos recommends that you upgrade Sophos Anti-Virus whenever there is a new engine released - currently this is monthly.

In any given period, Sophos will have analyzed many hundreds of new viruses and other threats. Some of these will probably require updates to the scanning technology, often because there are changes in the kind of objects that viruses can infect, e.g., new Microsoft Office file formats.

For this reason, Sophos can only offer technical support to customers who are using an up-to-date version of Sophos Anti-Virus.

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