Dragos acquires NexDefense, provides free asset identification tools

Dragos, provider of the industrial industry’s most trusted asset identification, threat detection and response platform and services, announced the acquisition of Atlanta-based NexDefense, a provider of industrial controls system (ICS) visibility technology.

As part of this announcement, the company also introduced today Dragos Community Tools, a set of free assessment tools to help organizations of all sizes around the globe forge the path forward towards comprehensive ICS security.

NexDefense further developed and sold Integrity, a tool originally funded by the United States Department of Energy and developed as “Sophia” at Idaho National Laboratory (INL). NexDefense was one of the earliest and most well-known ICS security companies in the space.

This acquisition further supports the company’s mission of safeguarding civilization by making ICS security tools and knowledge readily accessible to the ICS security community.

“Dragos is committed to safeguarding civilization, and central to this mission is finding ways to provide tools and resources for the entire community,” said Robert M. Lee, CEO and Founder of Dragos.

“With the acquisition of NexDefense, we can provide a free asset identification tool specifically for operators looking to start with situational awareness and enable continuous asset monitoring capabilities, thereby helping move our entire community closer to the next level of maturity in security against cyber threats.”

Dragos Community Tools provide organizations with free asset identification capabilities, an important first step to effective threat detection and response. This is especially important in ICS environments, as they can contain thousands of assets–many potentially unknown to industrial organizations–with interconnected communications.

The tools include both the NexDefense product Integrity, as well as Cyberlens, an assessment tool developed by Dragos team members before founding Dragos Inc.

Dragos is providing free access to Dragos Community Tools, so that many in the community can take steps to effectively understand what assets they have and how their ICS assets function, communicate, and behave. This visibility is the prerequisite for development and deployment of cybersecurity architectures to detect and respond to threats.

Dragos Community Tools

  • Dragos’ CyberLens product is available free of charge for industrial organizations as an assessment tool to help the community quickly process packet captures and visualize ICS environments.
  • Dragos’ Integrity product is available free of charge for industrial organizations in need of continuous, passive ICS network monitoring with basic DPI and asset fingerprinting capabilities.

The creation of these free community tools is an expansion of the Dragos commitment to the community. Dragos began its programmatic community approach in October 2018 with Neighborhood Keeper, a program announced earlier this year that serves smaller providers who lack sufficient resources to buy and manage advanced security technologies.

Neighborhood Keeper is a paid offering that makes ICS threat analytics and data accessible to smaller providers, giving them access to collaborative ICS data at near-real-time and providing them immediate insight into the ICS threat landscape without revealing sensitive data.

For organizations that have gone beyond these free tools in their requirements towards a more comprehensive ICS security approach, the Dragos Platform technology combines more robust asset identification, threat detection, and response capabilities to provide organizations the most defensible, holistic ICS security strategy.

With the Dragos Platform, ICS cybersecurity defenders can independently identify ICS assets, accurately detect threats, and are provided prescriptive guidance to respond confidently.