Sophos Antivirus Review: Sophisticated Security
Based in Oxford, U.k. Sophos is a worldwide leader in cybersecurity. Sophos products protect nearly 400,000 organizations in more than 150 countries from some of the most advanced cyberthreats.
SophosLabs utilizes Sophos' cloud-native and AI-enhanced solutions to secure endpoints (laptops, servers, and mobile devices) and networks against evolving cybercriminal tactics and techniques. These threats include breaches, ransomware, malware, exploits, data exfiltration, phishing, and more.
The award-winning Sophos Central cloud-based platform integrates Sophos' entire portfolio synchronizing the best-of-breed products, from the Intercept X endpoint solution to the XG Firewall, into a single system called Synchronized Security.
If you're interested in Sophos products and wish to learn more, keep reading...
Security and Protection
An antivirus first and foremost functions as a protective means against malicious ware. Other extra are nice luxury items. However, protection stays the top priority. Here we will discuss Sophos protection in the following areas:
1. Third-party lab tests
In regards to antivirus security, how should an antivirus protection assessment be measured? Do we simply take the words of the AV creators for their own devices?
The best way to assess an antivirus on its functionality is by using a third-party antivirus testing lab.
Third-party testing Labs are experts with well-constructed criteria and testing methods on testing AV products, providing an unbiased opinion on product security.
AV-Test lab reports for the home product for individuals were dated back to 2011, which is very outdated; as for reports on the endpoint product for companies, they are more up to date, recent reports with high scores were found.
Sophos reports using the same technology used in their endpoint product and home product. While they are no recent reports on their home product, the endpoint product reports by AV-Test are up to date.
The endpoint product scores, according to AV-Test, were as follows:
- Sophos scores a 6/6 score on its ability to detect malicious ware.
- Sophos antivirus scores 5.5/6 in the impact on device performance department is minimal. This means it won't take up your device's resources.
- Sophos antivirus has a low false-positive rate with a 6/6 usability score. This means it's unlikely to mistake regular files for harmful ones.
Sophos antivirus test by AV-Comparatives was dated back to 2016 and hasn't been updated since. The results were the following:
- Sophos scored 1/3 stars (Standard) in the device performance impact department. This means it affects system performance relative to other antiviruses.
- Sophos had a Real-World Protection Test with a 1/3 stars (Standard) real-world protection score. According to a test conducted with 1619 domains/files, this score checks the rate of detection of malicious files and domains.
- Sophos had a 10 false-positive rate (False alarms), with the industry average in the test being 26. While successfully blocking 96.2% of threats.
Proper Real-World Protection takes into account how well an antivirus blocks threats and can differentiate between threats and none threats.
- Malware removal test: Sophos antivirus has a 2/3 (Advanced) score regarding Malware removal. This test checks the ability of antivirus to remove malware that has already infected a PC. Out of 45 Test cases, it scored 82 out of 100.
SE Labs rank products from AAA being the highest score, AA (Intermediate), and B (Lowest score).
According to SE Labs:
- Sophos antivirus home product scored (AA) overall with a total accuracy rating of 94%.
- Sophos antivirus home product had a 738/750 with 98% legitimate accuracy, meaning it was able to differentiate the products accurately and classify legitimate applications and URLs.
- In terms of protection, Sophos antivirus home product detected 99 out of 100, blocked 87, and neutralized 5. Earning a protection score of 92/100.
- Sophos antivirus home product had a protection accuracy rating of 342/399 (86%).
For a more comprehensively reviewed antivirus product with more up-to-date third-party data, read our top recommendations Norton 360 and Bitdefender.
2. Firewall and IDS protection
While Sophos' home product doesn't provide firewall protection on its own, they have a separate firewall product named XG Firewall Home product for free users. They can be downloaded as a free tool, thus providing users with a safe network.
3. USB rescue toolkit
A USB rescue toolkit functions as a backup anti malicious ware, which can be used when booting your device, as in some cases, a malicious ware would hinder your device's ability to boot up.
Sophos Plans and Features
Rather than having multiple plans to choose from, Sophos has only one plan, the Premium plan. Features provided include:
- Threat protection keeps your valued, private information safe by blocking viruses, ransomware, and other malware from stealing or destroying files, documents, and photos.
- Anti-Phishing and hacking allow you to surf the web with confidence, knowing Sophos Home protects your online shopping and banking from phishing and hacking.
- Private browsing for anti-tracking prevents individuals and companies from tracking your data online. Tracking is often used to tracks your data from websites you visit, allowing for identity theft profiling. While big companies like Google and Facebook have trackers implemented in many websites online, used for targeted advertisement.
Google tracker can be found lurking in approximately 75% of web pages online! Facebook is found in 24%. Trackers are used for targeted advertisements.
- Privacy protection stops hackers from accessing your webcam or microphone – a feature found in various malware types – to block spying and predatory acts.
- Protect all your devices by providing licenses for up to 10 PCs or Macs from virtually anywhere. As for Androids and iOS devices, it provides an unlimited amount.
While a desktop app provides you with a user interface, clicking on the dashboard automatically takes you to a web page displaying the dashboard using the cloud.
Sophos antivirus provides its users with various forms of customer support so, they may never be lost in times of need; these include:
- Email and ticketing
Pricing and Payments
Sophos home product is very straightforward in terms of plans, with just a premium plan available for use. The only difference is dependent on how long you buy the subscription for, with the longer period providing a lower per month price.
A summary table for Sophos home product prices:
|Plans||Sophos Home Product Premium|
|One year||$44.99/10 devices|
|Two years||$74.99/10 devices|
|Three years||$104.99/10 devices|
Sophos provides users with the possibility to pay using the following methods:
- Major credit cards
Sophos provides a 30-day money-back guarantee for users to experience their product before deciding.
Sophos antivirus doesn't really seem that focused on individuals; their endpoint product for companies seems very good and secure, but it's tailored for companies rather than individuals.
The Sophos Home product lacks many extra features that other antiviruses use. There haven't been any updates on their home product on third-party testing labs, while the endpoint product has been getting regular updates.
Nevertheless, Sophos mentions that the technology used in their home product is the same used in their endpoint security product.
If you're looking for an endpoint product for a company, Sophos might be a good choice. Other products such as Norton and Bitdefender might give you better results depending on what you're looking for individual use.