July 17, 2017

Cisco to acquire security start-up Observable Networks

The acquisition reinforces Cisco’s commitment to build on its cybersecurity for cloud networking solutions.

American networking giant Cisco has announced its plans to acquire security software provider Observable Networks for an undisclosed amount, with the deal expected to be closed in the first financial quarter of 2018. The move is being viewed as part of Cisco’s broader strategy to shift their focus towards cloud software-centric products.

Observable Networks specializes in providing IT teams with cloud based security tools that perform endpoint modeling, a technique that tracks the activities of smart devices connected to an enterprise network. Observable Networks say organizations use their technology to detect unusual cyber activity, which could indicate potential hacks or cyber attacks.

Ultimately, Cisco’s aim is to blend Observable Network’s applications into its Stealthwatch cloud security platform, with machine-learning-led anomaly detection becoming increasingly crucial in maintaining network integrity. Bringing news of the acquisition to light, Cisco’s VP of Corporate Business Development Rob Salvagno elaborated further:

I am pleased to announce Cisco’s intent to acquire Observable Networks, a privately held software company headquartered in St. Louis. Observable Networks provides cloud-native network forensics security applications delivered as a service. Its cloud-native machine learning techniques for device modeling identifies insider and external threats faster and more accurately.

Together, Cisco and Observable Networks will extend our Stealthwatch solution into the cloud with highly scalable behavior analytics and comprehensive visibility. On the heels of the unveiling of our new intent-based network, this acquisition reaffirms Cisco’s commitment to providing unparalleled security solutions for our customers and partners.

Observable Networks is the latest in a number of similar acquisitions by Cisco in recent years, having added OpenDNS for USD 635 million, Lancope for USD 453 million and CloudLock for USD 293 million to its portfolio since 2015, thereby highlighting the company’s decision to prioritize the cloud market.

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