Tripwire acquires nCircle to form new security giant

Tripwire stunned the security industry with news that it has entered into an agreement to purchase nCircle.

You're going to be hearing the name Tripwire a lot more, and the name nCircle a lot less probably. Tripwire announced today that it is acquiring nCircle--making it one of the biggest companies in information security.

The combined company will be a powerhouse in the security industry. Combined, Tripwire and nCircle have over 500 employees and 7,000 customers spanning 96 countries around the globe. Their combined revenue in 2012 was about $140 million. The new company will rank as a competitor for McAfee, Symantec, EMC, and others in the security and vulnerability management arena.

Tripwire isn't a household name like Symantec or McAfee, but it's known and respected in information security circles, and it boasts nearly half of the Fortune 500 as clients. The company has been around for over a decade, and initially made its mark with a file integrity product that alerts IT admins when critical files have been altered--a possible sign of exploit or malware attacks. Tripwire has products for identifying and remediating file and configuration changes, and for logging and correlating security events.

Meanwhile, nCircle has established itself as a key player for compliance and risk management. Its nCircle Purecloud service provides clients with a cloud-based, automated vulnerability management tool, and nCircle Benchmark enables CISOs to measure the security performance, and gather relevant, real-world metrics they need to build a business case for new security initiatives.

Historically, security has been seen as a necessary evil, but treated with disdain, or at least indifference in the board room. Seatbelts and airbags are crucial elements in a vehicle, but they're not sexy selling points, and nobody chooses a car for its seatbelts. Security is necessary, but it doesn't generate revenue, and it's much harder to prove or make a case for projects designed to ensure the company doesn't lose money.

Security is maturing, though. The focus is shifting from a quest for silver bullet solutions, to an understanding that there is no perfect security, and that the real goal is risk management. Companies are beginning to understand that security can complement and enable business objectives.

Rob Enderle, principal analyst with the Enderle Group, shared his thoughts on the deal with me. Enderle cautions that mergers such as these don't always work out smoothly. "Blending a series of products to get best of breed is very difficult because they typically aren't designed to work together."

Richard Stiennon, chief research analyst with IT-Harvest, however, thinks there might be some synergy in this merger. Stiennon told me that the two units are often maintained as separate entities so one can be easily sold off at a profit when the opportunity arises, but he believes that Tripwire and nCircle mesh well to create a stronger, united security firm.

We'll have to see how the company chooses to structure itself, or present its products and services to clients moving forward. The two companies are not disclosing the terms of the deal. The acquisition is expected to close in April and is subject to the customary closing conditions.

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags mcafeesymantecsecurityemcbusiness security

More about EMC CorporationMcAfee AustralianCircleSymantecTripwire

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by Tony Bradley

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    IDG Live Webinar:The right collaboration strategy will help your business take flight

    Speakers - Mike Harris, Engineering Services Manager, Jetstar - Christopher Johnson, IT Director APAC, 20th Century Fox - Brent Maxwell, Director of Information Systems, THE ICONIC - IDG MC/Moderator Anthony Caruana

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts