Here's how Google will defend itself with Mandiant by Giulia Alfieri

Strengthening cybersecurity, of course, but there is also more behind the second major acquisition of Google which will welcome Mandiant into its cloud computing division by the end of the year

Google is preparing to make the second largest acquisition in its history. Ten years after it bought Motorola for $ 12.5 billion, it will close its $ 5.4 billion deal with cybersecurity company Mandiant by the end of 2022. Goal: better protect the customers of its cloud services and beyond.


Mandiant, based in Reston, Virginia, is a cybersecurity company founded in 2004 by Kevin Mandia, a former Air Force officer. It became known 10 years later, in 2014, when it attributed to the Chinese unit APT1 - linked to the People’s Liberation Army - the responsibility for some cyberattacks targeting US organizations. “Since our foundation in 2004, - explained the CEO - Mandiant's mission has been to fight cyber attacks and protect our customers from the latest threats”. Most recently, he worked on investigating cases of ransomware attacks against SolarWinds and Colonial Pipeline.


The deal between Google and Mandiant calls for the giant headed by Sundar Pichai to pay $ 5.4 billion in cash - about 53% more than Mandiant's value prior to the announcement, Finimize reports. Shares in the cybersecurity firm, after The Information broke the news on Monday, March 7, closed with a 16% rise. The contract, the two companies said in a statement, provides for the payment of $ 23 per share in an entirely cash transaction including Mandiant's net liquidity. After the official communication of the interested parties, now all that remains is to wait for the approval of the regulatory authorities. The purchase is expected to be finalized by the end of the year and will increase Google's cloud computing business, which generates over $ 19 billion annually.


Several reasons prompted the Mountain View-based giant to take the step. First of all, strengthen the protection of customers of its cloud services, in fact, Mandiant will be part of Google's cloud computing division. This also means wanting to reduce the distance that separates the company from the other two giants: Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services. "Cyber security is a mission and we believe it is one of the most important of our generation - said Mandiant - There has never been such a critical moment in cybersecurity."


Google has also been trying for some time to reduce its addiction to advertising - which still makes up the bulk of its revenue - and Mandiant could help. In fact, "the laws on the privacy of users, increasingly stringent - recalls Il Sole24Ore - seem to be able to turn into a ballast for the accounts of these companies".


Finally, the growing risk of a hybrid war in cyberspace. A risk that with the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine has become increasingly concrete. It is no coincidence that for some analysts cited by Finimize, the close agreement between Google and Mandiant is only the first of a trend in which cloud platforms buy cybersecurity companies. Dan Ives, an analyst at investment firm Wedbush, told CNBC that "Google is doubling its ability to handle cyber threats at the right time."


After all, experts report, cyberattacks have become more common in recent years and are expected to double by 2025. Only in the first two days of the invasion of Ukraine is it estimated that Russian cyberattacks have increased by 800%. Thomas Kurian himself, CEO of Google Cloud, declared that the world "is facing unprecedented cybersecurity challenges".