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Researching the threat intelligence space

Richard Stiennon | March 23, 2016
Explosive growth, chaotic dynamics

Another category of threat research service is that provided for purposes of brand protection or early alerting. Vendors such as BrandProtect, Digital Shadows, and Recorded Future, attempt to identify when a customer is being targeted or even the early planning stages of an attack. They use so-called Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) and tools for mining pastebin, chat channels and anonymous sites hidden within the Tor network to gather their intelligence; the so-called Deep Web.

Here are the vendors I tracked in my first Market Research Report on Threat Intelligence, listed in order of size based on number of employees.

iSIGHT Partners  
Webroot BrightCloud  
Recorded Future 
LookingGlass Cyber Solutions 
Team Cymru       
Digital Shadows     
FarSight Security  
Intel 471     
iDefense (Verisign)         
Emerging Threats (Proofpoint) 

The hardest part of tracking an emerging space is its fluidity. Since I started tracking these vendors the space has seen some disruption. 

Norse Corp appears to be defunct, although its website is functioning. I took their numbers out of my calculations of market size.

iSIGHT Partners, perhaps spooked by plummeting valuations and reported scarcity of new venture investments in the 4th Quarter of 2015, abandoned its aspiration of a 2016 IPO andsold out to FireEye.

IID sold to InfoBlox at a fairly low valuation of $45 million.

But there are signs of a continued strong investment environment in the Threat Intel Space. Digital Shadows announced a $14 million funding in February.

LookingGlass acquired Cyveillance as part of a new influx of investment dollars from NewSpring Capital.

And there are more to come. Just looking at startups in Israel there are six I have been able to identify in the space: 

Vigilance Networks
Cyfort Security  
ACID Technologies   

After posting this column I expect to learn of a dozen more.

The threat intel space is fragmented but vibrant. As new vendors enter and the pioneers continue to grow I expect several years of 84 percent growth. 


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