Cisco has announced its intention to acquire Isovalent, a prominent player in open-source cloud-native networking and security. This strategic move aims to strengthen Cisco’s secure networking capabilities within public clouds.
The acquisition aligns with Cisco’s Security Cloud vision, a cloud-delivered, AI-driven integrated security platform designed for organizations of diverse sizes and structures. The Cisco Security Cloud facilitates the abstraction of security controls from multicloud infrastructure, providing advanced protection against emerging threats across various clouds, applications, and workloads.
Upon the completion of the acquisition, the Isovalent team will become part of the Cisco Security Business Group, anticipated in the third quarter of fiscal year 2024.
Isovalent’s significant contributions to the open-source technology eBPF, particularly in the development of Cilium, position it as a key player in cloud-native networking and security. eBPF offers unparalleled insight into the inner workings of the operating system, making it an ideal interface for constructing security systems capable of safeguarding workloads during runtime.
Recently, Isovalent has introduced innovative solutions, including Cilium Mesh for seamless connection of Kubernetes clusters across hybrid clouds, Tetragon, an eBPF-based security solution ensuring runtime visibility and enforcement within applications and networks, and Isovalent Enterprise, an enterprise distribution of Cilium and Tetragon.
Redefining multicloud networking and security
By integrating Isovalent into its ecosystem, Cisco plans to leverage the open-source capabilities of Cilium to develop a distinctive multicloud security and networking solution. This collaboration is intended to simplify and expedite customers’ digital transformation initiatives in the contemporary distributed environment encompassing applications, virtual machines, containers, and cloud assets.
The synergy between Cisco and Isovalent aims to deliver security controls with comprehensive visibility without compromising networking and application performance.
Back in 2020, Cisco became an investor in Isovalent during its Series A funding round. During that time, Cilium was already a preferred solution for cloud-native connectivity and the default choice in managed Kubernetes offerings for major public cloud providers such as Google Kubernetes Engine, Google Anthos, and Amazon EKS Anywhere.
Isovalent’s innovations, including Cilium Mesh and Tetragon, have garnered attention and adoption due to their capabilities in providing visibility, seamless policy definition, and security controls for cloud-native applications.
Tetragon offers detailed insights into application internal processes and behavior on the network, ensuring robust security controls for workloads across any cloud. Isovalent’s leadership in the Cloud Native Computing Foundation and eBPF Foundation, coupled with its contributions to the open-source ecosystem, strengthens Cisco’s commitment to supporting and enhancing the open-source landscape.
Cisco will continue to offer and enhance Isovalent Enterprise for Cilium, complementing its software-defined networking solutions. The integration of Cilium Mesh with Cisco’s networking solutions will provide customers with seamless and secure networking across various environments. Additionally, the combination of Cisco Talos threat intelligence and security analytics capabilities with Isovalent’s innovations promises to deliver cutting-edge protection for workloads on any cloud platform.
Cisco has been notably active in acquisitions, marking its fifth purchase in the realm of security. The most substantial among these was the $28 billion Splunk deal that took place in September.