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Cisco to acquire OpenDNS to boost IoT security offering

Steve Rogerson
July 10, 2015
Cisco is to acquire OpenDNS, a privately held security company based in San Francisco, for around $635m. OpenDNS provides threat protection for any device connected to the IoT, anywhere, anytime. The acquisition should boost Cisco's Security Everywhere approach by adding broad visibility and threat intelligence from the OpenDNS cloud delivered platform.
The OpenDNS platform provides security delivered in a software-as-a-service (SaaS) model, making it easier for users to deploy and integrate as part of their defence architecture or incident response strategies. By providing threat awareness and pervasive visibility, the combination of Cisco and OpenDNS should enhance advanced threat protection across the full attack continuum, before, during and after an attack.
Typically, devices and people connected to the network are easier to identify and track for potential security threats. However in a world in which devices and people can connect from anywhere at anytime, enterprise IT teams have increasingly limited visibility into potential threats from these unmonitored and potentially unsecure entry points into the network, creating security risks.
Combining OpenDNS's visibility, predictive threat intelligence and cloud platform with Cisco's security and threat capabilities should increase awareness across the extended network, both on- and off-premise, reduce the time to detect and respond to threats, and mitigate risk of a security breach.
"As more people, processes, data and things become connected, opportunities for security breaches and malicious threats grow exponentially when away from secure enterprise networks," said Hilton Romanski, Cisco chief technology and strategy officer. "OpenDNS has a strong team with deep security expertise and key technology that complements Cisco's security vision. Together, we will help customers protect their extended network wherever the user is and regardless of the device."
The OpenDNS team will join the Cisco Security Business Group led by David Goeckeler, senior vice president and general manager. Under the terms of the agreement, Cisco will pay $635m in cash and assumed equity awards, plus retention based incentives for OpenDNS. The acquisition is expected to close in the first quarter of fiscal year 2016, subject to customary closing conditions.