The chip business has been good to Intel, but it's not the only product in the Santa Clara semiconductor firm’s portfolio. Among other things, Intel is also entrenched in the security market. The company spent billions of dollars acquiring McAfee several years ago and this week scooped up PasswordBox, a relative newcomer to the security scene that makes a self-titled password manager somewhat similar to LastPass.
PasswordBox launched to the public only 18 months ago and during that time has grown from a skeleton crew of just eight full-time employees to a modest workforce of 44 individuals today. Beyond putting out a password manager that's seen 14 million downloads to date, PasswordBox has developed a few different security technologies and has been especially focused on mobile, a sector Intel is eager to expand its operations.
"That’s why we are excited to officially announce that we are joining Intel Security, a global leader in secure technology. We share a common mission – to enrich the lives of our users, and make each user’s online experience as secure and seamless as possible," PasswordBox said in a statement. "Now, with the expertise, resources and support of Intel Security behind us, the possibilities of what we can build tomorrow – and how many people’s lives we can positively impact – are extraordinary."
As for what happens next, PasswordBox and Intel aren't saying, suggesting instead that you follow Intel Security on social media for updates on "cool product news." For the time being, PasswordBox will remain available as is, and to celebrate the acquisition, Intel is giving new and existing customers a premium subscription at no cost, which will be valid until Intel Security releases a new version.
Neither party disclosed the terms of the deal, though Intel presumably paid a lot less than the $7.68 billion it shelled out for McAfee. Whatever amount it paid, the upside for Intel is gaining a technology and security team that's focused on mobile at a time when the world is becoming increasingly connected.