Elbit Systems, Ltd, is a defense company in Israel known for manufacturing avionic systems and drones. The company recently had a makeover done with ping-pong tables, open areas, and couches and chairs thrown in to help them lure in today’s younger software engineers from elite units of intelligence in the Israeli Defense Forces, who the could work at the company in developing new products for cybersecurity.
Elbit and other defense companies like it are learning it is important to add some startup culture in order to grab some of the more than $35 billion business of corporate cybersecurity.
Resources to protect against cyberattacks have grown in defense budgets that have been stagnant otherwise, while the high profile security breaches such as Target and JPMorgan have convinced military contractors they need to add civilian arms to help commercialize technology for data-security.
The CEO of a research firm in Tel Aviv says an arms race really exists. All governments are attempting to acquire or develop tools that protect them and to attack when needed. Commercially, defense giants as well as other businesses are attempting to grab hold of the top innovation and best patents the field has.
Elbit’s new unit for cyber protection known as Cyberbit, is attempting to carve its own niche in data security at the corporate level, a market, which is expected to be over $40 billion in total revenue within three years.
The cybersecurity market for governments has been forecasted to reach at least $134 billion globally over the same time frame.
Raytheon Co. is the fourth biggest defense contractor in the U.S., and is trying to create a company specializing in cybersecurity by combining a cyber unit of its own and Vista Equity Partners LLC’s Websense in a deal worth $1.8 billion to grow commercial sales at the company.
Cyberbit was established formally this past April. It is split into two different entities – one is one-stop-shopping for data mining and surveillance for intelligence agencies in government and law enforcement, and has export controls that govern it. The second has the CyberShield system of Elbit, which allows countries, large enterprises and armies to identify, deflect and manage cyberattacks.