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Juniper Networks Acquires Security Startup Mykonos Software for $80 Million in Cash

Juniper Networks today announced that it has acquired Mykonos Software, a security startup that provides technology that uses deception to detect and confuse attackers. Things move fast in the security world, as the company just announced a $4 million round of funding in late January led by Tom Golisano, founder of payroll processing giant Paychex, and former owner of the Buffalo Sabres.

The San Francisco-based company, which has been focusing more on product development more than sales, agreed to be bought by networking giant Juniper Networks for $80 million in cash.

The Mykonos Web Security product uses deception to detect, confuse, slow down, and prevent attackers in real-time – helping to keep Websites safe. The company also has a sales office New York City and its R&D headquarters is based in Rochester, New York.

Speaking with SecurityWeek last month, David Koretz, president and CEO of Mykonos Software, compared his company’s software to choose your own adventure stories read by young-adults. “For example, we will actually block the real .htaccess file, and return a fake one that look like a perfectly valid file, along with user names and encrypted passwords,” Kortez said. “Will even let [attackers] login to a fake recover password file, making the attackers think they have had success but in essence just burning up their time.”

In short, Mykonos' deception-based technology can help prevent attackers and stop zero-day web attacks by catching an attack in progress, profiling the attack, and then use the attackers behavior to thwart future attacks.

"With this acquisition, Juniper is driving security innovation with disruptive technology that breaks from conventional ideas,” said Nawaf Bitar, senior vice president and general manager, Security Business Unit at Juniper Networks.

"We are excited about the opportunity to leverage Juniper's world-class organization to deliver the next generation of application security based on best of breed proactive and preventative technology,” Koretz added.

In addition to Tom Golisano, recent investors in Mykonos include Scott Banister, founder of Ironport (acquired by Cisco in 2007 for $830 million), Jeff Clarke, executive chairman of Travelport, chairman of Orbitz and board member of Red Hat, and Mike Jones, founder and CEO of Clover Capital.

The transaction closed on February 13, 2012.

Related Reading: Increased Spending Fuels Spike in Cyber Security Industry M&A Activity

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For more than 10 years, Mike Lennon has been closely monitoring the threat landscape and analyzing trends in the National Security and enterprise cybersecurity space. In his role at SecurityWeek, he oversees the editorial direction of the publication and is the Director of several leading security industry conferences around the world.