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Akamai beefs up cybersecurity portfolio with ransomware-tastic Guardicore acquisition

Content delivery network Akamai is set to crack open the piggy bank with the purchase of Israel-based Guardicore.

The deal, worth $600m, is intended to erect another line of defence against attackers thanks to the Tel-Aviv-based company’s microsegmentation. While Akamai has firewalls and gateways to spare, dealing with miscreants once a foothold has been gained within the corporate infrastructure can present a challenge.

Hence the buy of Guardicore and its technology: “substantially mitigating the impact of breaches and the threat posed by ransomware,” according to Akamai.

Akamai plans to use the capabilities afforded by the agreement to let customers peer deeper into data flows over data centres and clouds. The goal is that breaches will be detected more swiftly and, importantly, mitigated earlier.

Guardicore’s microsegmentation tech is all about isolation and segmentation of network applications and components. Policies can be applied and compliance enforced over public, private, and hybrid clouds. It’s quite a bit more granular than the legacy firewalls of old.

The company was founded in 2013 and has been funded to the tune of approximately $110m, with the last round in 2019 raising $60m. Akamai is anticipating its new toy will contribute $30m-$35m in revenue for fiscal 2022.

It has been a problematic few months for Akamai. Things in Australia went south in June with an outage in one of the company’s Prolexic DDoS services. Doubtless keen for ever bigger and better borkage, Akamai went on to take out a chunk of the internet as its Edge DNS took a tumble. It happens to the best of us.

Akamai has enjoyed solid, if uninspiring, revenues of late. It reported $853m for its second quarter ending on 30 June 2021, up 7 per cent on the same period in 2020. This was driven mainly by international revenues, which increased 15 per cent, while US revenues remained relatively flat. The company also reported a 25 per cent year-on-year growth in revenue for its Security Technology Group while its Edge Technology Group fared less well, with a 1 per cent drop. ®