Exclusive: ThreatMetrix Acquires TrustDefender To Protect Cloud From Fraud

As companies move their data out from behind firewalls into the cloud and employees use self-provisioned mobile devices, infosecurity must change. That’s why cybercrime prevention provider ThreatMetrix will announce tomorrow its acquisition of TrustDefender, which detects malware-based attacks. ThreatMetrix can now offer an integrated fraud protection solution that verifies the identity and integrity of any device trying to access secure data. If an endpoint has been compromised through malware or identity theft: access denied.

Reed Taussig, ThreatMetrix’s CEO tells me the acquisition was made with a combination of cash and stock. It was bankrolled by ThreatMetrix’s 300% year on year revenue growth and the $12 million funding round it took in October 2010.

TrustDefender co-founder and CEO Andreas Baumhof will become the new ThreatMetrix CTO. The majority of the Australian TrustDefender’s team was picked up, but won’t be relocating to ThreatMetrix’s San Jose headquarters. TrustDefender took $16 million in funding from Nexbix Ltd in March 2010.

ThreatMetrix’s device identifications system looks at over 250 aspects of an endpoint device to determine its integrity. — where is it, hidden proxies, if text is being rendered in foreign language, or if that email address has been used to make a request from multiple continents. TrustDefender detects malware and other threats including trojans, Poison Ivy, and man-in-the-browser-attacks. It services financial institutions, SaaS providers, ecommerce companies, and government.

Before now, companies had to seek out separate vendors for device identification and malware detection. Taussig tells me “The identification of malware on a device should be a feature of device identification. We were fortunate to have found a malware ID company that has leading edge technology with referenceable, high-end customers that recognize this is a match made in heaven. The acquisition provides huge advantages, as clients can be supported by a single product.”

Additionally, ThreatMetrix has just signed a partnership with major credit bureau TransUnion. This will help it verify the authenticity of user biographical and financial data to protect logins and payments.

Instead of only accessing firewalled data through dedicated, pre-screened devices, employees now accessing the cloud with their own laptops, tablets, and phones. Let’s be honest. Who knows what those devices are being used for in the off-hours? It’s therefore more important than ever for IT departments to have a strong device ID security system. Otherwise their company’s source code, intellectual property, design docs, customer names or credit card numbers could be at risk.