Testing Characteristics

Email Security Solutions Tested by ICSA Labs

ICSA Labs tests both standalone email security solutions that protect enterprises from malicious threats in email as well as email security solutions that can be integrated into the security vendors other security product offerings.  For security vendors already participating in ICSA Labs' related, standard ATD testing, these vendors may optionally add an ATD-email threat detection component to testing.  In that case, the vendor's entire ATD solution is tested to determine whether or not it meets both the standard ATD and ATD-Email certification testing criteria.    
Eligible ATD-email solutions from email security vendors can act as an MTA, a TCP proxy that understands SMTP, or be scanning traffic between MTAs.   Additionally, security vendors may provide ATD-email security to their customers through a cloud-based service.  

Test Cycle Frequency & Certification Eligibility 

Like ICSA Labs' standard ATD testing, ATD-Email test cycles are performed each calendar quarter against the latest threats and range from three to five weeks in duration.  To attain and retain certification, security vendor solutions must be tested for at least 3 weeks and meet the testing criteria over that time.  Because testing is performed quarterly, ICSA Labs tests a security vendors ATD-Email solution four times during a calendar year.   During each test cycle ICSA Labs subjects ATD-Email security solutions to hundreds of test runs.  The test set is comprised of a mix of new threats (emails with malicious attachments and/or malicious URLs), little-known threats and innocuous applications and activities – delivered one after another continuously for the length of testing.