Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


DDoS detection

02:36 PM
Ray Le Maistre
Ray Le Maistre
News Analysis-Security Now

Machine Learning at Heart of Security M&A Splurge

Four acquisitions in a week all point to the growing importance of machine learning for major security system vendors.

If you blinked during the past ten days you might have missed four significant security sector acquisitions that all had one thing in common -- major cybersecurity vendors splashed some cash on enhancing their machine learning capabilities.

Those acquisitions are:


  • Sophos plc is spending $100 million upfront (plus a $20 million earn-out) for Invincea, which has developed an "endpoint security portfolio [that] is designed to detect and prevent unknown malware and sophisticated attacks via its patented deep learning neural-network algorithms." Sophos notes that Invincea's tech, which "uses deep learning neural networks and behavioral monitoring" has been "consistently ranked as among the best performing machine learning, signature-less next-generation endpoint technologies in third-party testing." Invincea had raised about $47 million from its backers.



  • Radware Ltd. (Nasdaq: RDWR) bought Seculert, a "SaaS cloud-based provider of protection against enterprise network breach and data exfiltration." Radware noted that the deal gives it access to "heightened machine learning technology and big data analytics tools that allow the company to conduct advanced threat analysis." A price for Seculert, a privately held company that had raised about $16 million in VC backing, wasn't disclosed. Radware also just announced 2016 full-year revenues of $196.6 million, down by 9% from a year earlier.



  • [company link 13970 not found] has bought Niara, a User and Entity Behavior Analytics (UEBA) specialist, to integrate into its Aruba ClearPass security portfolio. "Niara is a leader in this new category of products that employ machine learning and big data analytics on enterprise packet streams and log streams to discover these advanced attacks," noted Keerti Melkote, senior vice president and general manager of HPE Aruba, in a corporate blog. The price wasn't disclosed: Niara had raised almost $30 million from the likes of NEA and Index Ventures. (See Unknown Document 730041.)



  • Malwarebytes has bought Saferbytes, an Italian cybersecurity specialist that has developed Deepviz, "a cloud based, self-learning threat intelligence platform powered by Deepviz Malware Analysis Engine." Malwarebytes, which didn't disclose any financial details, says the deal will enhance its "enterprise remediation offering and threat feeds, in addition to further advancing the company's market approach and global strategy."


"There's a common motivation running through all these recent acquisitions," notes Patrick Donegan, principal analyst at HardenStance and a contributing analyst to Heavy Reading. "We've seen a bunch of new machine learning-based malware protection outfits like Cyber Reason, Cylance, Darktrace and Deep Instinct attract a lot of attention during the past 12 months. The established security players that we've seen doing the buying over the past ten days are having to augment their portfolios with machine learning or behavioral analytics capabilities. They need it as a competitive response to the challenge these other companies present and because that's where the market is going."

And it seems that what the market is looking for as malware becomes more sophisticated and the real value in security tolls becomes the ability to detect changes in behavior within a network and adapt to those changes as trends start to appear. One good reason why Cisco, for example, has added machine learning capabilities to its Tetration Analytics platform. (See Unknown Document 729987.)

And machine learning is not only appearing as a tech trend in security -- just about every niche of communications networking has companies claiming to have either machine learning or artificial intelligence capabilities baked in these days. (See Unknown Document 729958, Unknown Document 729709, Unknown Document 729358 and more.)

— Ray Le Maistre, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
Dark Reading Staff 9/21/2020
Hacking Yourself: Marie Moe and Pacemaker Security
Gary McGraw Ph.D., Co-founder Berryville Institute of Machine Learning,  9/21/2020
Startup Aims to Map and Track All the IT and Security Things
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  9/22/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
Special Report: Computing's New Normal
This special report examines how IT security organizations have adapted to the "new normal" of computing and what the long-term effects will be. Read it and get a unique set of perspectives on issues ranging from new threats & vulnerabilities as a result of remote working to how enterprise security strategy will be affected long term.
Flash Poll
How IT Security Organizations are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
How IT Security Organizations are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
The COVID-19 pandemic turned the world -- and enterprise computing -- on end. Here's a look at how cybersecurity teams are retrenching their defense strategies, rebuilding their teams, and selecting new technologies to stop the oncoming rise of online attacks.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-23
An issue was discovered in Xen through 4.14.x. x86 PV guest kernels can experience denial of service via SYSENTER. The SYSENTER instruction leaves various state sanitization activities to software. One of Xen's sanitization paths injects a #GP fault, and incorrectly delivers it twice to the guest. T...
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-23
An issue was discovered in Xen through 4.14.x. There is mishandling of the constraint that once-valid event channels may not turn invalid. Logic in the handling of event channel operations in Xen assumes that an event channel, once valid, will not become invalid over the life time of a guest. Howeve...
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-23
An issue was discovered in Xen 4.14.x. There is a missing unlock in the XENMEM_acquire_resource error path. The RCU (Read, Copy, Update) mechanism is a synchronisation primitive. A buggy error path in the XENMEM_acquire_resource exits without releasing an RCU reference, which is conceptually similar...
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-23
An issue was discovered in Xen through 4.14.x. There are evtchn_reset() race conditions. Uses of EVTCHNOP_reset (potentially by a guest on itself) or XEN_DOMCTL_soft_reset (by itself covered by XSA-77) can lead to the violation of various internal assumptions. This may lead to out of bounds memory a...
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-23
An issue was discovered in Xen through 4.14.x. Out of bounds event channels are available to 32-bit x86 domains. The so called 2-level event channel model imposes different limits on the number of usable event channels for 32-bit x86 domains vs 64-bit or Arm (either bitness) ones. 32-bit x86 domains...