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McAfee Enterprise-FireEye relaunches as Trellix, aims to be ‘market leader’ in XDR

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The cybersecurity giant formed last fall through the merger of McAfee Enterprise and FireEye has a new name, Trellix, and a new mission to become the dominant force in the fast-growing market for extended detection and response (XDR).

“Where we’re going is to be the market leader in XDR,” said Trellix CEO Bryan Palma in an interview with VentureBeat.

In October, private equity firm Symphony Technology Group closed its acquisition of FireEye and combined the well-known cyber vendor with another big name in the industry, McAfee Enterprise, which Symphony had acquired in July. Palma, formerly the executive vice president for FireEye’s products business, was named CEO of the combined company at the time.

With today’s announcement, both the FireEye and McAfee Enterprise brands will be retired, and will no longer be used with any products, Palma said.

Doubling down on XDR

The combined business generated about $2 billion in revenue in 2021, and saw revenue percentage growth in the “mid-teens” during the fourth quarter of the year, Palma said. The company’s new focus on the XDR market is “resonating with customers, and we expect to grow again in in 2022,” he said.

With the focus on XDR as a way to provide security that is highly adaptable to a wide variety of customer environments, “we’re not just two companies put together. We’re a completely new entity,” Palma said.

Definitions of XDR tend to vary, but Gartner defines it as a cloud-delivered technology that “integrates, correlates and contextualizes data and alerts from multiple security prevention, detection, and response components.” The idea is to make sense of the alerts coming in from numerous tools so that security operations teams can prioritize their efforts around the real and most-critical threats.

While less than 5% of organizations are using XDR today, that’s expected to climb to 40% by 2027, according to a recent report from Gartner. Notably, the XDR field is already getting crowded, with the research firm tallying 19 major players in the space (two of which have been McAfee Enterprise and FireEye).

Security complexity

Underpinning the XDR opportunity is the fact that cybersecurity is only “getting more and more complex,” Palma told VentureBeat. He cited software supply chain attacks such as the SolarWinds breach—first disclosed by FireEye in December 2020—and the widespread Apache Log4j vulnerability that was disclosed last month.

However, XDR is primed to serve as an answer to the complexity, and “I think we’re in the front-end of that cycle,” Palma said. “We’re well aligned for that market transition and architecture.”

XDR platforms can take different approaches—with some focusing on correlating data from native tools and others emphasizing an “open” approach, which provides analytics for data gathered from third-party tools.

One key differentiator for the Trellix XDR platform is that it enables both approaches, Palma said. “While we support native, we also support open. So we’re going to ingest everybody else’s tool that you can imagine,” he said.

The Trellix XDR will be capable of ingesting and correlating data from across 600 different tools, in addition to the company’s own native tools, which is a “big advantage,” Palma said.

Endpoint protection and detection

Key components of the XDR platform include endpoint protection and endpoint detection and response (EDR) solutions, he said. Trellix has technology offerings from both the McAfee Enterprise and FireEye businesses in these areas, and the combined company is underway on working to “bring that together so we can be best in class for our customers,” Palma said.

Trellix expects to have a single offering for endpoint protection and a single offering for EDR at some point in 2022, he said. Those offerings will be available to “meet our customers where they are,” whether their environment is on-premises, hybrid, or in the cloud, Palma noted.

By contrast, “many of our competitors can only service cloud customers now—they’ve made that full switch,” he said.

Security operations

Meanwhile, the Trellix XDR platform also brings a suite of solutions for security operations, with tools that span security information and and management (SIEM); security orchestration, automation, and response (SOAR); and user and entity behavior analytics (UEBA).

“We’ve got an on-prem SIEM. We have a native cloud SIEM, that historically was called Helix and comes from the FireEye side—it’s a SIEM-SOAR tool. And we have a UEBA tool,” Palma said. “So we’re bringing all that together into a single security operations console. That console will ingest not only our own native technology, but over 600 other technologies as well.”

This breadth of offerings is another top advantage for Trellix, he said. “A lot of the competitors play in the security ops market or the endpoint market, but not in both,” Palma said.

Threat labs

The third key component for the Trellix XDR platform is its threat labs branch, which runs “billions of sensors out in the in the market” collecting security telemetry, Palma said. Trellix’s threat labs also leverage relationships on threat intelligence with companies such as Mandiant (formerly a subsidiary of FireEye).

“You’re going to see us do a lot more with our threat labs, which really is what powers our technology platform—getting that real-time information on vulnerabilities, on threat actors, into our platform,” Palma said.

Several offerings from the former McAfee Enterprise business will not be included as a part of Trellix. STG plans to spin off McAfee Enterprise’s secure service edge portfolio—including cloud access security broker (CASB), secure web gateway (SWG), and zero trust network access (ZTNA) solutions—as a separate company during this quarter, according to a news release. The name of the new company was not disclosed.

Symphony had paid $1.2 billion for the FireEye products business and $4 billion to acquire the enterprise security business from McAfee, which continues as a consumer security software firm.

‘Living’ security

At launch, Trellix has a total of 40,000 customers and 5,000 employees, according to the release.

Palma said the ultimate vision for Trellix is around providing what he called “living” security—which is capable of adapting to the fast-changing dynamics in cybersecurity, as well as to the heterogeneous operating environments that have driven in part through the shift to remote work. (The company name is a reference to a garden trellis that supports plants as they grow—hence the notion of “living” security.)

Supporting an open approach with XDR also shifts the emphasis away from “warring factions” in the cyber industry, and toward supporting an “adaptable, flexible ecosystem,” Palma said. “That’s really where we’re going—which was a which was an important part of our business, but not where we came from historically. So this is a big transformation.”

Along with McAfee Enterprise and FireEye, XDR vendors listed by Gartner in its recent report are Check Point Software Technologies, Cisco, CrowdStrike, Cybereason, Elastic, Fidelis Cybersecurity, Fortinet, F-Secure, Microsoft, Palo Alto Networks, Rapid7, SecureWorks, SentinelOne, Sophos, Tehtris, Trend Micro, and VMware.

Meanwhile, open XDR vendors that have recently added funding include Hunters, which raised $30 million in August; Stellar Cyber, which landed $38 million in November; and ReliaQuest, which announced raising an undisclosed amount in December at a pre-money valuation of more than $1 billion.

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Identity in the metaverse: Creating a global identity system

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With the advent of the metaverse, the need for a global identity system has become apparent. There are many different ways to create an identity in the metaverse, but no single system is universally accepted. 

The challenge is usually two-fold: first, how to create an identity that is accepted by all the different platforms and services in the metaverse, and second, how to keep track of all the different identities a person may have.

There are many proposed solutions to these challenges, but no clear consensus has emerged. Some believe that a single, global identity system is the only way to ensure interoperability between different platforms and services. Others believe that multiple identities are necessary to allow people to maintain their privacy and security.

The debate is ongoing, but it is clear that the need for a global identity system is becoming more urgent as the metaverse continues to grow.

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In this article, we will explore the various options for creating a global identity system in the metaverse. We will discuss the pros and cons of each option, and try to identify the best solution for the future.

Option 1: A single global identity

The simplest solution to the problem of identity in the metaverse is to create a single, global identity system. This would be a centralized system that would be responsible for managing all identities in the metaverse. 

The advantages of this approach are obvious: It would be much easier to keep track of identities, and there would be no need to worry about different platforms and services accepting different identities. In addition, a centralized identity system would allow for better security and privacy controls, as well as the ability to track identity theft and fraud.

However, this approach also has several disadvantages. First, it would be very difficult to create a global identity system that is accepted by everyone. Also, a centralized system would be vulnerable to attack and could be used to track people’s movements and activities. Third, it would be difficult to protect the privacy of users in a centralized system.

Option 2: Multiple identities

Another solution to the problem of identity in the metaverse is to allow each person to have multiple identities. This would mean that each person could have one or more identities that they use for different purposes. 

One of the main advantages of this approach is that it would allow people to maintain their privacy and security. Each person could choose which identity to use for each situation, and they would not have to worry about their entire identity being exposed. In addition, this approach would be more resilient to attack, as it would be much harder to take down multiple identities than a single one.

The limitations of such an approach would be that it could be difficult to keep track of all the different identities, and there would be no guarantee that different platforms and services would accept all of them. In addition, multiple identities could lead to confusion and could make it more difficult for people to build trust with others.

Option 3: A decentralized identity system

A third solution to the problem of identity in the metaverse is to create a decentralized identity system. This would be an identity system that is not controlled by any one centralized authority but rather is distributed among many different nodes. 

This might seem like the ideal approach, since decentralization is a common theme in the metaverse. However, there are still some challenges that need to be overcome. For instance, it would need to be ensured that all the different nodes in the system are properly synchronized and that the system as a whole is secure. In addition, it might be difficult to get people to adopt such a system if they are used to the more traditional centralized approach.

One solution would be to get the nodes in the system to be run by different organizations. This would help to decentralize the system and make it more secure. Another advantage of this approach is that it would allow different organizations to offer their own identity services, which could be more tailored to their needs.

Another would be to incorporate an edge computing solution into the system. This would allow for more decentralized processing of data and could help to improve performance. It would also make the system more resilient to attack since there would be no centralized point of failure.

The best solution for the future of identity in the metaverse is likely to be a combination of these approaches. A centralized system might be necessary to provide a basic level of identity services, but it should be supplemented by a decentralized system that is more secure and resilient. Ultimately, the goal should be to create an identity system that is both easy to use and secure.

The ideal identity standards of the metaverse

Now that we have explored the various options for identity in the metaverse, we can start to identify the ideal standards that should be met by any future global identity system. 

It is no easy task to create a global identity system that meets all of the criteria, but it is important to strive for an ideal solution. After all, the metaverse is still in its early stages, and the decisions made now will have a lasting impact on its future. 

Current iterations of the metaverse have used very traditional approaches to identity, but it is time to start thinking outside the box. The ideal solution will be one that is secure, private, decentralized, and easy to use. It will be a solution that allows people to maintain their privacy while still being able to interact with others in the metaverse. 

Most importantly, it will be a solution that can be accepted and used by everyone. Only then can we hope to create a truly global identity system for the metaverse.

The bottom line on identity in the metaverse

The question of identity in the metaverse is a complex one, but it is an important issue that needs to be addressed. 

The challenges associated with creating an implementation that is secure, private and decentralized are significant, but they are not insurmountable. For one, it will be important to get buy-in from organizations that have a vested interest in the metaverse. These organizations can help to promote and support the adoption of identity standards. 

It is also important to keep in mind that the metaverse is still evolving, and the solution that is ideal today might not be ideal tomorrow. As such, it will be critical to have a flexible identity system that can adapt as the needs of the metaverse change. 

Ultimately, the goal should be to create an identity system that is both easy to use and secure. Only then can we hope to create a truly global identity system for the metaverse.

Daniel Saito is CEO and cofounder of StrongNode

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How to Eliminate Scheduling Inefficiencies in Your Business

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What do salons, consultancies, and home service providers all have in common? This question may seem like the prime setup for a joke, but there’s no punchline to look forward…

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Why You Should Start a Business Only While You Have a Job

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Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Many people that I meet tell me that they dream of starting their own . I always ask them, “Then why don’t you?” They typically respond by saying that they have so many financial and personal responsibilities, that they can’t just quit their job to start a company, etc. Then I tell them my story …



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Related: How to Use Your Current Job to Start Your Next Business

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