Orange has announced its acquisition of UK-based managed security services provider SecureData (including consulting subsidiary SensePost) for an undisclosed sum.
“We are both thrilled and excited to be joining the Orange Cyberdefense family,” said Ian Brown, Executive Chairman at SecureData. “Both organisations share the same vision and aspiration for the cybersecurity market, and have many complementary services and skills.”
Like many other major telcos, Orange has been active in the cybersecurity space for some time: the Orange Cyberdefense business unit, which provides managed security, detection/reaction and threat intelligence services, was established in 2016 and operates across 28 countries.
By being part of Orange we will be able to better serve the international needs of many of our existing customers as well as providing enhanced cyber services to Orange customers within the UK.Ian Brown, Executive Chairman, SecureData
Unsurprisingly, it’s had particular success in France, where it describes itself as “the #1 cyber security player”, and it has big plans for the wider European market too.
The acquisition of SecureData, one of Europe’s largest independent security service providers with a strong UK presence, including a UK-based SOC, is expected to help Orange expand its presence internationally, particularly within the Anglophone market.
“We are very proud and happy to announce the acquisition of SecureData, which will mark a major milestone in Orange’s development in Europe’s cybersecurity market,” said Hugues Foulon, Executive Director of Strategy and Cybersecurity activities at Orange.
He went on to add: “We are convinced that the combined expertise of Orange Cyberdefense and SecureData will provide a powerful resource for our customers in ensuring the protection of their valuable data.”
According to Orange’s press release on the subject, the intention is for SecureData to continue operating autonomously.
“By being part of Orange we will be able to better serve the international needs of many of our existing customers as well as providing enhanced cyber services to Orange customers within the UK,” said Brown.
In addition to being far from the only telecoms provider to offer its own cybersecurity services, Orange isn’t alone in expanding its offering through acquisition, either – AT&T’s acquisition of AlienVault last summer is one noteworthy example; SingTel’s purchase of 98% of Trustwave, back in 2015, is another.
As with hardware providers, law firms, management consultancies, and traditional insurance companies, it’s clear that telcos are recognising the opportunities offered by the increasing level and complexity of cyber risk that organisations face.
Our own research has shown that a solid, well-established reputation goes a long way in determining cybersecurity choices. For a number of reasons – not least being the perception of stability, or the ease of justifying a purchasing decision – the ‘big boys’ of tech, such as Cisco and IBM, are still among the recommended by CISOs, ranking above many cybersecurity-exclusive providers.
For the most part, telcos have yet to achieve this status. But following moves such as this acquisition, and Orange Cyberdefense’s stated aim to become one of Europe’s major cybersecurity players, I wouldn’t be surprised to see more of them put greater emphasis on this arm of their business.