Verdasys Rebrands As Digital Guardian, Plans Threat Detection Push

Verdasys is changing its name to Digital Guardian, its flagship data loss prevention platform, a rebranding that company executives said is recognized and supports its product growth into threat detection and security analytics.

The Waltham, Mass.-based company announced the changes today at the 2014 Black Hat USA conference in Las Vegas. Kenneth Levine, the newly appointed chief executive, told CRN that the company's agent-based DLP suite will always be at the core of its portfolio. But the CEO said his team has a vision to expand the company's capabilities.

"We feel that our agent and the way that we collect virtually every data event that happens already, that we can take it to cyber use cases for insider and outsider threats, device control and more," Levine said. "We think we can provide granular visibility in orders of magnitude beyond what others are able to provide."

[Related: Verdasys Names New CEO, Plans Broad Channel Push]

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The growing interest in intellectual property protection is being driven by security research into detecting targeted, cyberespionage attacks that are designed to furtively steal sensitive trade secrets, manufacturing specs and other documents. Levine, a former McAfee executive following its acquisition of security information event management platform maker NitroSecurity in 2011, is working with two other former NitroSecurity executives, Doug Bailey, the company's chief strategy officer, and Salo Fajer, chief technology officer, to develop stronger analytics for protecting intellectual property, detecting malware and identifying advanced attacks that threaten sensitive data.

In addition, the company will launch an expanded channel program, with significant investment in additional resources for the Americas, India and Asia, Levine said, calling the program plans "much more comprehensive and aggressive." The company's strong technology alliance program includes a new connector to FireEye breach detection appliances and Palo Alto Networks' WildFire service, HP-ArcSight and Splunk, which have introduced the company to a broader ecosystem of resellers, consultants and systems integrator partners, Levine said.

"We're being seen as an important extension of many of our alliance partner capabilities to reduce false positives and get incident responders investigating and containing the most important security incidents," Levine said. "Channel partners are that trusted adviser, because they can put together multiple products to create a solution that best fits a company's unique security posture, data protection strategy and IT environment."

Levine said the company is focusing on building out its threat intelligence collection and management console capabilities to display relevant information. Digital Guardian recently added support for Citrix ShareFile to enable users to block data being sent to unapproved personal cloud storage locations such as Dropbox, or storage devices, and redirect it to ShareFile. The company also is maintaining its partnership with General Dynamics Fidelis Security Systems for managed data loss prevention and is seeing strong growth and additional interest there, Levine said.

NEXT: Verdasys Trying To Distinguish Itself Against Symantec, Competitors

Digital Guardian could compete in the next-generation endpoint threat detection market, said solution providers, who point to a variety of emerging security vendors that attempt to identify threats, but don't have the context into data flow at an organization to identify the most significant threats.

Andreas Mertz at IT-Cube, certified FireEye partner based in Munich, told CRN that Digital Guardian and other endpoint connectors to networking security gear provide significant visibility into endpoint threats that bolster threat detection systems.

"Threat detection appliances must be integrated into a company's entire security platform," Mertz said in a recent interview. "That includes incident response processes, data protection policies and endpoint visibility."

Market research firm Gartner gave the company high marks in its analysis of the content-aware data loss prevention market, for having strong auditing, workflow and sensitive content protection capabilities. The research firm said the company has significant penetration with companies protecting intellectual property and trade secrets.

Digital Guardian is trying to differentiate itself against Symantec, which is extending its data loss prevention platform with its broader endpoint security capabilities, Intel Security (formerly McAfee) and RSA. Gartner said the market to protect intellectual property is increasing significantly, making up more than 20 percent of businesses' DLP inquiries. Most firms are protecting process documentation and other text-based resources, but a significant number of businesses also are protecting source code, chemical formulas and sensitive manufacturing files, Gartner said.

Data loss prevention is continuing to attract significant interest driven by the threat landscape, and a focus on advanced threats and targeted attacks that are aimed at intellectual property theft, said Kevin Wheeler, founder and managing director at InfoDefense, a Dallas-based information security services firm and Symantec partner.

"It's beginning to trickle down to companies that are not necessarily in highly regulated industries," Wheeler said.