ZeroFOX strikes partnership with McAfee to sell its social media cyber security software

Baltimore startup ZeroFOX formed a partnership that could spread its software globally.

McAfee security software will soon include protection from cyber threats spread via social media through a partnership with Baltimore startup ZeroFOX.

The Federal Hill company's social media "attack detection system" will be integrated into McAfee's flagship security software, McAfee Enterprise Security Manager, the companies said Wednesday. The system monitors links and profiles on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter for malware, phishing and other malicious activity.

The deal, financial terms of which were not disclosed, gives ZeroFOX access to McAfee's customer base and its sales team.

"Being aligned with the largest security company in the world is huge validation, but it's also huge market reach for us," ZeroFOX Chief Operating Officer Evan Blair said.

The company has received $13 million from investors including New Enterprise Associates in the past year and a half, and has grown to 75 employees, Blair said.

McAfee sought out ZeroFOX because it had been hearing demand from clients for protection as they connect with their own customers on sites like Twitter and Facebook, Blair said.

"As social media usage becomes increasingly common in the enterprise, businesses are unknowingly opening their networks to new vulnerabilities that may infiltrate networks in relatively novel ways," Ed Barry, McAfee vice president of global technology alliances said in a statement.

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