Customers sometimes ask how McAfee corporate announcements relate to the public sector, so I decided to talk about two recent ones: the pending Stonesoft acquisition and the new Endpoint Suites offering. Both these developments make us an even stronger, more comprehensive security company, and they further strengthen our Security Connected platform.
Our proposed acquisition of Stonesoft Oyj is a work in progress. We entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the company in May, and we hope to close the tender offer next quarter. Founded in 1990, Stonesoft is based in Helsinki, Finland and has about 265 employees. Like McAfee, Stonesoft received recognition from objective third parties: Gartner positioned them as a “Visionary” in the February 2013 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Network Firewalls*, and they received a “recommend” status in NSS Labs’ latest 2013 firewall tests.
And firewall technology is what Stonesoft is best known for: They’re an innovator in next-generation firewalls. Add this to the high-assurance firewall McAfee already offers government agencies and critical infrastructures – our new network intrusion prevention system – and you have a powerful defensive capability. McAfee truly is driving the technology and the market on how to protect high bandwidth entrances to networks as well as how to balance the best protections with the highest efficiencies to keep customers safe. All of this also has the effect of making life difficult for cyber adversaries.
But firewalls and network gateways are only one part of a comprehensive security posture, as the recent announcement of our enhanced Endpoint Suites for Business and Enterprise demonstrates. McAfee is unique in that we combine network and endpoint technology and actually connect those operations to make everything smarter and safer.
Basically, we developed the endpoint suites because customers came to us and asked why they were still incurring attacks when they had tools in place. The answer may be that they didn’t have the proper protections activated or they may have needed additional tools to have full protection. All security tools need to talk to each other – hence, Security Connected strategy.
To make it easy for customers, we developed a comprehensive suite for enterprises and businesses that has virtually everything needed for complete protection. It’s also the first suite to include McAfee DeepDefender, a rootkit protection based on hardware-enhanced security developed jointly by Intel and McAfee.
DeepDefender is a significant development because enterprise endpoints are easy prey for the stealthy malware that can maneuver around operating system-based defenses. In response, McAfee and Intel created “DeepSafe” (product is DeepDefender). When DeepSafe is loaded on a machine, it loads below the operating system level, so you have security sitting right on the hardware, protecting the entire system.
In addition to DeepDefender the new endpoint suite includes dynamic whitelisting, risk intelligence, and real-time security management plus mobile device management and support for Macs and Linux. Thus the suite can help not only enterprises – including critical infrastructures – but also federal agencies protect devices, data and applications.
Most important, though, the Stonesoft and Endpoint Suite announcements show something larger: that McAfee is the total protection company. Our vision is to be the premier global security company and to be recognized as the leader in network, endpoint and management/analytics security solutions. We think this vision tracks completely with what government and critical infrastructures need to defend themselves.
*Gartner: Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Network Firewall, by Greg Young, February, 2013
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