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Forcepoint Buys Remote Browser Isolation Startup Cyberinc

Forcepoint says Cyberinc’s browser isolation technology enables businesses and government agencies to minimize risk from ransomware, malware, and other malicious code while preserving performance.

Forcepoint has purchased emerging remote browser isolation vendor Cyberinc to give administrators granular controls that allow them to minimize risk without impeding user productivity.

The Austin-based platform security vendor said San Ramon, Calif.-based Cyberinc’s Smart Isolation capability intelligently adapts web rendering according to the risk levels of the page or web element. The Cyberinc deal comes less than a year after Forcepoint debuted its own remote browser isolation offering powered by New York-based Ericom Software.

“The acquisition of Cyberinc’s Smart Isolation capabilities is the first of many investments Forcepoint will make to enhance user productivity, lower operational burdens and eliminate traditional monolithic products through a best-in-class SASE [Secure Access Service Edge] cloud service,” Forcepoint CEO Manny Rivelo said in a statement.

[Related: Forcepoint Layoffs Cut Deep Into Channel Organization: Sources]

Cyberinc was founded in 2016, employs 66 people, and has raised $11.5 million in three rounds of outside funding, according to LinkedIn and Crunchbase. The company was a subsidiary of Mumbai, India-based Aurionpro Solutions, and sold its 190-person identity and access management business to consulting giant KPMG in January 2018. Forcepoint leaders weren’t immediately available for comment.

As part of the acquisition, Forcepoint said it’ll establish an innovation center in Mumbai that brings together and builds upon Cyberinc’s India-based technical and engineering talent. Forcepoint plans to integrate Cyberinc’s Smart Isolation capabilities within its SASE offering, which currently includes: web and cloud security, zero trust network access, email security gateway and next-generation firewall.

“Like Forcepoint, Cyberinc understands the key to modern security is to get ahead of the threat and prevent breaches before they happen,” Cyberinc CEO Samir Shah said in a statement. “Our shared vision is to intelligently adapt to the changing levels of risk posed as employees click on links or web pages while balancing a better native user experience and security.”

The first of Cyberinc’s two approaches to rendering is Secure Streaming, which Forcepoint said renders elements remotely and securely sends harmless pixels to the endpoint for the strongest security. In contrast, Cyberinc’s UX Optimized model intelligently renders harmful pages and web elements remotely while rendering the less harmful pages and elements locally to deliver a good user experience.

Cyberinc’s Smart Isolation technology is context-aware, enabling the isolation to be dynamically adapted according to the risk associated with each page and elements in the page, said Jim Fulton, director of SASE and zero trust solutions. The technology enables businesses and government agencies to minimize risk from ransomware, malware, and other malicious code while preserving browser performance.

“As a company that sees automation and personalization powered by risk-based intelligence to be the future of cybersecurity, we’re excited about [Cyberinc] Isla’s potential to go beyond just keeping ‘bad stuff’ out,” Fulton wrote in a blog post Thursday. “We plan to integrate it widely throughout our Data-first SASE platform.”

Browser isolation startups have been popular acquisition targets in recent years. Among the deals: Symantec got Fireglass for a reported $250 million in July 2017; Proofpoint bought Weblife.io for $60 million in November 2017; Zscaler purchased Appsulate for $13 million in May 2019; Cloudflare bought S2 Systems for $39.2 million in January 2020; and McAfee bought Light Point Security in February 2020.

This is Forcepoint’s first acquisition since August 2017, when the company bought security analytics and user and entity behavior analytics (UEBA) vendor RedOwl. Forcepoint itself was sold in January 2021 by Raytheon to Francisco Partners for $1.1 billion, with the private equity firm installing former Arista and F5 executive Manny Rivelo as CEO.

Under Francisco Partners, Forcepoint has cut roughly two-thirds of its North American channel staff, including regional channel chief Mark Nehring, channel account managers, and channel marketing team members, CRN said in March. Forcepoint’s headcount has sunk to 2,388 employees, down 8 percent from 2,600 people six months earlier, with many sales executives leaving the company, LinkedIn said.

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