The deal is expected to close before the end of BlackBerry’s current fiscal year (February 2019), and Cylance will run as a separate business unit within BlackBerry.
Cylance’s flagship endpoint security product, CylancePROTECT, takes a mathematical and machine learning approach to finding and containing zero day and advanced attacks. The company has been using AI and machine learning as part of its core products.
Blackberry will spruce up its ‘chip-to-edge’ portfolio, including QNX, its safety-certified embedded OS that is deployed in more than 120 million vehicles, robot dogs, medical devices and other gear.
The plan is to integrate Cylance technology with the Blackberry Spark platform, which is at the centre of our strategy to ensure data flowing between endpoints (in a car, business, or smart city) is secured, private, and trusted.
BlackBerry describes Spark as a secure chip-to-edge communications platform “designed for ultra-security and industry-specific safety-certifications, such as ISO 26262 in automobiles”.
In early 2018, BlackBerry launched Jarvis, a cybersecurity service designed to help companies in the automotive and other sectors find vulnerabilities in their software.
The acquisition of Cylance is not BlackBerry’s first in the security space—but is its largest acquisition so far.