Shalom Life | March 15, 2015

Startup Club: CyActive

The Israeli cyber security company was recently purchased by PayPal for some $60 million

By: Caitlin Marceau

Published: March 13th, 2015 in Business » World

Startup Club: CyActive

Over the past few decades, a growing number of small businesses involved in various industries have popped up around the world meeting the needs of an ever-growing, ever-changing market.

Jewish businessmen and innovators continue to excel throughout these industries, displaying their prowess as creative, forward-thinking entrepreneurs, and tapping into continuously developing markets with 'startup' companies.

In a bid to recognize these decorated entrepreneurs for their ongoing contributions and advancements to these fields, Shalom Life is pleased to present: Startup Club, highlighting the best and the brightest of Jewish entrepreneurs who continue to provide our community with new, influential and innovative ideas that will forever change the way we interact with the world, and with one another.

Follow our lead and we’ll follow yours – send us tips or suggestions via email, comment below or tweet us @ShalomLife, in our mission to celebrate the most visionary of Jewish entrepreneurs.

Check out last week's inductee into the Club here.

Business: CyActive

Base of Operations: Be’er Sheva, Israel

Entrepreneurs: Liran Tacman, Shlomi Boutnaru

Industry: Tech

Founded: 2013

If you’ve ever been the victim of malware, then you know how frustrating the experience can be. Once loaded onto your computer, it often seems impossible to remove it from your system without, at best, losing some data and, at worst, having to scrap your computer and change all your private information (not to mention cancel your cards, call the banks, and try not to cry...)

Dealing with malware is often a reactionary process and can often feel like trying to kill the proverbial hydra: cut off one head, and three grow back. Although there are programs that are designed to try and stop malware once you’ve been hacked, there are few out there which aim to prevent an attack before it happens.

But that’s where CyActive comes in.

The Israeli company is different from most cyber security companies. Rather than designing systems to deal with the virus once it’s already too late, they aim to predict attacks and prevent them from ever happening, hence their tagline 'Future Proof Security'. According to the company website, CyActive uses “bio-inspired algorithms and a deep understanding of the black hat’s hacking process” to take a proactive approach to cyber attacks.

The company, which was founded back in 2013 according to CrunchBase, was created by Liran Tancman and Shlomi Boutnaru. Tancman, who works as the company’s CEO, previously worked for Israeli national security, and was head of the military unit Cyber Strategy. He has a B.Sc. in Biology and Cognitive Sciences from Hebrew University, and years of experience with data analysis and algorithm research.

Boutnaru, who works as CyActive’s CTO, was formerly the COE of Cyber & Security at Matrix, and specializes in the integration of security as well as testing, and malware code testing. He holds a B.Sc. in Computer Science, with a focus on Network Security and Operating System Security.

With such an accomplished background, someone was bound to notice.

And recently PayPal did.

The online payment monolith recently confirmed that it’s acquired CyActive in what’s speculated to have been, according to TechCrunch, a deal valued at $60 million. PayPal, which has recently announced it will be separating from its parent company, eBay, has made several notable purchases in the last little while. In addition to CyActive, they also bought Paydiant, a mobile wallet company, for a deal that’s said to be worth an astounding $300 million.

PayPal's acquisition of CyActive couldn’t come at a better time, given that businesses are increasingly being the targets of hacking and theft. By purchasing CyActive, PayPal is not only showing they take their security seriously, but that of the millions of users which rely on their services on a daily basis.

They’re also making a case to mobile users, who can’t decide whether to buy an iPhone or an Android. According to TechCrunch, Apple Pay, which is the company’s mobile wallet, has been proven to be susceptible to fraud. However no word yet if people have been able to crack Paydiant.

But with CyActive and PayPal on their side, we’re not counting on it.

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