Cisco Expands 'Security Everywhere' Strategy With Plan To Purchase Lancope

Cisco Systems revealed its second acquisition in just two days with the news that it plans to purchase security threat analysis and protection company Lancope for $452.5 million to extend its "Security Everywhere" strategy.

The privately held Alpharetta, Ga.-based security vendor provides network behavior analytics, threat visibility and security intelligence. It already has a partnership with Cisco in which it has integrated its Lancope StealthWatch technology into Cisco's entire network infrastructure.

"Cisco said at the beginning of the year that they were going to double down on security, and this is exactly what they're doing," said Greg Kushto, director of security practice for Force 3, a Crofton, Md.-based network security solution provider ranked No. 79 on CRN's 2015 Solution Provider 500 list and a Cisco Gold partner. "They're actually buying the right products and the right companies to complete the portfolio. … Cisco is definitely working hard to be the top security company."

[Related: Lancope CISO: Palo Alto, Check Point Cannot Compete 'Effectively' Against Cisco's New Security]

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The San Jose, Calif.-based networking leader said the acquisition will advance its strategy of providing advanced threat protection across the full attack continuum -- before, during and after an attack. Lancope solutions add network behavior analytics to Cisco's security portfolio, which extends protection further into the network.

"Lancope has been part of Cisco’s security solution for many years through a successful commercial relationship and now we are coming together as one team," said Rob Salvagno, vice president of Cisco's Corporate Business Development, in a blog post Tuesday. "Together with Lancope, our combined solutions can help turn a customer’s entire network into a security sensor."

Force 3 has been selling Lancope and Cisco solutions with great success, and Kushto believes the acquisition will only increase sales.

"With the Cisco name behind it rather than the Lancope name, it's going to be potentially an easier sale," he said. "We've been making some great progress with Lancope. It's a great product using the NetFlow in order to analyze the data and look for anomalies – it makes a lot of sense and it's always been a great fit for Cisco. It's just going to make it better now they're part of the Cisco family."

According to a 2014 IDC Worldwide Specialized Threat Analysis and Protection Market Shares report, Lancope owned around 5.5 percent of the total market in 2014 – with a 48 percent revenue increase year-over-year.

Lancope complements Cisco's other recent security acquisitions such as OpenDNS, Portcullis and Neohapsis, according to the company.

Cisco Monday also disclosed plans to acquire privately held data and analytics specialists ParStream. The Cupertino, Calif.-based company recently launched an analytics platform purpose-built and optimized for the Internet of Things, which is a top area of focus for the company.

Partners say Cisco's recent acquisition spree is part of CEO Chuck Robbins' plan to build a faster, more agile organization in the fast-paced digital age.

"Over the last year the pace has picked up. Chuck talks a lot about the speed of change, and I think he's very much taking on the task of making sure that Cisco maintains a leadership role in the market. You do that in [through] a combination of innovation but also strategic acquisitions," said Kent MacDonald, vice president of converged infrastructure and network services at Long View Systems, a Calgary, Alberta-based solution provider and Cisco Gold partner.

"You can't sit back when you recognize a technology or innovation -- you have to go forward. I see Cisco doing that at a brisker pace and aligning to what's Chuck seeing in this change," said MacDonald. "We're seeing lots of acquisitions in the market lately, not just by Dell and Cisco. The world is moving at a faster pace and I think that’s driving their business credence around acquisitions to the same degree."

Lancope's team will join Cisco's Security Business Group led by David Geockeler, senior vice president and general manager. Cisco expects the purchase to be complete in the second quarter of its current fiscal year.