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Symantec buys Israeli cybersecurity startup to boost defence platform

Will this acquisition secure Symantec's position as an industry leader?

By Tom Ball

Symantec has acquired Israeli cybersecurity startup Fireglass, strengthening its Integrated Cyber Defence Platform.

Fireglass specialises in a cybersecurity solution that uses agentless isolation in real time. This technology targets ransomware, phishing and malware, by aiming to stop it from reaching the network or endpoints.

The move is intended to bolster Symantec’s Secure Web Gateway and its email protection across both cloud, and on premise.

Another intended benefit of the Fireglass software is its ability to reduce the pressure on overwhelmed professionals manning the IT help desk, and on the security operations center (SOC).

The cybersecurity startup provides this using browser isolation, which provides assurance to customers as activity such as clicking on malicious links or accessing dangerous websites is done within a separate environment.

Symantec CEO, Greg Clark said: “Integrating Fireglass’ isolation technology with Symantec’s existing endpoint, email and secure web gateway sSymantec buys Israeli cybersecurity startup to boost defence platformolutions could reduce security events by as much as 70 percent, while virtually eliminating advanced threats spread by web browsing or email content. Isolation will become a core component in the design of cyber defense architectures for the cloud generation who face the reality of an encrypted Internet and the crisis inherent in email and web-delivered attacks.

“The ability for the security team to take an aggressive stance on unknown websites and questionable attachments without causing chaos for a company’s users and IT help desk is now a reality. Isolation is a key element of securing the cloud generation and is even a productivity gain for both the end user and security operations center,” said Clark.

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With cloud providing free flowing movement and accessing of critical files, it is prime time for a technology to come along that provides an overarching layer of protection to prevent common cyber threats, such as that provided by this cybersecurity startup.

Guy Guzner, Founder and CEO of Fireglass, said, “We’ve long admired Symantec for their leadership in protecting customers’ critical information. Fireglass’ industry-leading isolation technology helps customers battle zero-day attacks and other serious vulnerabilities, making it an essential element for protecting email, messaging and web browsing. It easily integrates with existing security solutions and across all forms of the endpoint including Windows, Mac, Android, iOS and all others including browser-enabled IoT devices. With Symantec’s global scale, we’re excited to bring this groundbreaking technology into the hands of more customers.”

Industry leader Symantec has made other high profile purchases in recent years, including Blue Coat Inc in 2015 for $4.65 billion, and Lifelock Inc for $2.3 billion earlier this year.

READ MORE: Microsoft acquires cyber security automation firm Hexadite

Ramin Safai, CISO of Jefferies Group LLC  said: “The pairing of browser isolation with Symantec’s proxy and endpoint capabilities forms a generational change in approach. Our tests show promise for meaningful reductions in attack surface and time-consuming security events… I applaud Symantec for focusing on tangible security outcomes – it’s precisely what the industry needs.”

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