Ask Different is a question and answer site for power users of Apple hardware and software. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I heard my computer's fan spinning fast, so I checked Activity Monitor and saw that a process called InterCheck was using close to 96% CPU. What is this process and why's it using so much CPU?

In the Inspect window, it said that the parent process is launchd.

share|improve this question
up vote 26 down vote accepted

It's a real-time scanning process by Sophos Anti-Virus that scans your computer's running processes in the background.

The parent process is launchd so that when you accidentally kill the Intercheck process, it gets restarted.

share|improve this answer
Sophos has a utility that lets you look at the various logs that might cause Sophos to misbehave and use all of your processor. Take a look at it here: It might be useful for the next time InterCheck acts out. – Zlatty Aug 20 '15 at 19:10
If anyone wants to temporarily disable it, go to Preferences, then the "On-Access" tab (far left), and turn the on-access scanner off. If this setting is greyed out, you'll need to unlock this panel by clicking the lock in the lower-left corner and entering your password. When you're finished doing whatever (installing a lot of stuff usually does it for me), you can turn it back on at your leisure. – jvriesem Nov 18 '15 at 2:12

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.