Palo Alto Networks
Russell 1000 Component
|Headquarters||Santa Clara, California, U.S.|
Nikesh Arora (CEO)|
Nir Zuk (Co-founder and CTO)
(Co-founder and VP)
|Revenue||US$2.27 billion (2018)|
|US$-129 million (2018)|
|US$-148 million (2018)|
|Total assets||US$5.82 billion (2018)|
|Total equity||US$966 million (2018)|
Number of employees
|5,348  (2018)|
Palo Alto Networks, Inc. (abbreviated as PAN or PANW) is an American multinational cybersecurity company with headquarters in Santa Clara, California. Its core products are a platform that includes advanced firewalls and cloud-based offerings that extend those firewalls to cover other aspects of security. The company serves 50,000+ organizations in 150+ countries, including 85 of the Fortune 100, and is listed 15th in the Fortune Future 50 Challengers list. It is home to the Unit 42 threat research team and hosts the Ignite cybersecurity conference. In June 2018, former Google and SoftBank executive Nikesh Arora joined the company as Chairman and CEO.
Palo Alto Networks was founded in 2005 by Israeli-American Nir Zuk, a former engineer from Check Point and NetScreen Technologies, and was the principal developer of the first stateful inspection firewall and the first intrusion prevention system. When asked why he started Palo Alto Networks, Zuk cited his objective of solving a problem enterprises were facing with existing network security solutions: the inability to safely enable employees to use modern applications, which entailed developing a firewall that could identify and provide fine-grained control of applications.
In 2014, Palo Alto Networks founded the Cyber Threat Alliance with Fortinet, Mcafee, and Symantec, a not-for-profit organization with the goal of improving cybersecurity "for the greater good" by encouraging collaboration between cybersecurity organizations by sharing cyber threat intelligence amongst members. By 2018, the organization had 17 members including Cisco, Check Point, Juniper Networks, and Sophos.
In 2018, the company began opening dedicated cybersecurity training facilities around the world as part of the Global Cyber Range Initiative.
In May 2018, the company announced Application Framework, an open cloud-delivered ecosystem where developers can publish security services as SaaS applications that can be instantly delivered to the company's network of customers.
In June 2018, former Google and SoftBank executive Nikesh Arora joined the company as chairman and CEO. His predecessor, Mark McLaughlin, became vice chairman of the board of directors. Arora received a pay package worth about $128 million, making him one of the highest paid executives in the United States.
In 2009, the company released a publication defining the "next-generation firewall." Palo Alto Networks defined this next generation firewall as containing application awareness, full stack visibility, extra-firewall intelligence, and upgrade paths in addition to the full capabilities of both traditional firewalls and intrusion prevention systems. Additionally, the company defines its firewall technology by the following abilities:
- Identify applications regardless of port, protocol, evasive tactic or Secure Sockets Layer
- Identify and control users regardless of IP address, location or device
- Protect against known and unknown application-borne threats
- Fine-grained visibility and policy control over application access/functionality
- Multi-gigabit, low latency, in-line deployment
Palo Alto Networks offers a Security Operating Platform which provides network security, cloud security, advanced endpoint protection, and various cloud-delivered security services through Application Framework. Components of the Security Operating Platform include (but is not limited to):
- Next-generation firewalls, offered in multiple forms including:
- As a physical appliance through the PA series, which includes small form-factor firewalls such as the PA-220 for small business and offices, to the PA-7000 series built for large enterprises and service providers.
- As a virtualized appliance through the VM series, allowing the firewall to be run as a virtual machine to secure virtualized data centers and private clouds. It is also compatible with public cloud environments such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud.
- As a streamlined cloud service provided by Palo Alto Networks through GlobalProtect Cloud Service.
- Panorama, a network security control center that allows customers to manage a fleet of firewalls at an enterprise scale from a single console.
- Traps™ advanced endpoint protection. Unlike a traditional antivirus, Traps does not rely on signatures to detect malware. Instead, it focuses on analyzing the behavior of programs to detect zero-day exploits. Threat intelligence is shared with and obtained from Wildfire.
- Wildfire, a cloud-based threat-analysis service which uses dynamic analysis, static analysis, machine learning, and bare-metal analysis to discover and prevent unknown threats..
- Logging Service, a cloud-delivered service that enables customers to collect large volumes of log data from their network for machine learning, data analytics, or use by apps in the Application Framework.
- Application Framework, an open cloud-delivered ecosystem where customers can subscribe to security applications developed by 3rd-party developers or Palo Alto Networks, such as Magnifier™ behavior analytics and AutoFocus™ threat intelligence.
- Morta Security was acquired for an undisclosed sum in January 2014
- Cyvera was acquired for approximately $200 million in April 2014
- CirroSecure was acquired for an undisclosed sum in May 2015
- LightCyber was acquired for approximately $100 million in March 2017 
- Evident.io was acquired for $300 million in cash in March 2018 
- Secdo was acquired for a undisclosed sum in April 2018 
- RedLock was acquired for $173 million in October 2018 
Recognition from industry analysts and labs for Palo Alto Networks firewalls include:
- The 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant identified Palo Alto Networks as a leader in the enterprise firewall.
- NetworkWorld granted short list status to Palo Alto Networks’ firewalls in its next-generation firewall review in 2011 and 2012.
- NSS Labs rated Palo Alto Networks firewalls “Recommended” in 3 network security tests:
- IPS Group Test (2011) in which NSS Labs notes it exceeded datasheet performance
- Traditional Firewall Group Test (2011); additionally, evaluated as best cost solution per protected megabit
- Next-Generation Firewall Group Test (2012) also receiving an evaluation as best cost solution per protected megabit
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- Albanesius, Chloe (February 13, 2015). "Obama Wants Tech Firms to Alert Feds to Cyber Threats". PC Magazine. Retrieved March 13, 2015.
- "Who We Are - Cyber Threat Alliance". Retrieved October 3, 2018.
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- "Palo Alto Networks Announces Availability of New Cloud-Based Logging Service". markets.businessinsider. 2017-09-27. Retrieved 2018-03-11.
- Aasha Bodhani, ITP Net. "Palo Alto Networks introduces global Cyber Range initiative." Jan 16, 2018. Retrieved Feb 6, 2018.
- "Ex-SoftBank COO Awarded $128 Million to Lead Palo Alto Networks". Bloomberg. 2018-06-04. Retrieved 2018-09-15.
- Pescatore, John; Young, Greg, Defining the Next Generation Firewall (PDF), retrieved 2 December 2012
- Next-Generation Firewall Overview (PDF), 2011, retrieved 2 December 2012
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- "Wildfire Malware Analysis - Palo Alto Networks". 2018. Retrieved September 14, 2018.
- "Logging Service - Palo Alto Networks". 2018. Retrieved September 13, 2018.
- "Application Framework - Palo Alto Networks". 2018. Retrieved September 13, 2018.
- Rao, Leena (6 January 2014). "Palo Alto Networks Buys Cyber Security Startup Founded By Former NSA Engineers, Morta". TechCrunch. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
- "Palo Alto Networks® Acquires Morta Security". Palo Alto Networks. 6 January 2014. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
- Rao, Leena (24 March 2014). "Palo Alto Networks Buys Cyber Security Company Cyvera For $200M". TechCrunch. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
- "Palo Alto Networks® Completes Acquisition of Cyvera". Palo Alto Networks. 10 April 2014. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
- King, Rachel (27 May 2015). "Palo Alto Networks acquires cybersecurity company CirroSecure". Zdnet. Retrieved 27 May 2015.
- "Palo Alto Networks acquires LightCyber".
- "Palo Alto Networks Closes Acquisition of Evident.io". Palo Alto Networks. Mar 26, 2018.
- "Palo Alto Networks Closes Acquisition of Secdo". Palo Alto Networks. Apr 24, 2018.
- "Palo Alto Networks to acquire RedLock for $173 M to beef up cloud security". TechCrunch. October 3, 2018.
- "Palo Alto Networks Hits The Magic Quadrant For Firewalls". The Wall Street Journal. December 16, 2011. Retrieved 23 January 2013.
- Snyder, Joel (22 August 2011). "Palo Alto earns short list status". Network World. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
- "Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls Earns "Recommended" Rating in NSS Labs Network Firewall 2011 Comparative Test". Palo Alto Networks. 18 April 2011. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
- "Palo Alto Networks Earns 'Recommended' Rating in NSS Labs' Next-Generation Firewall Group Test". Palo Alto Networks. 27 February 2012. Retrieved 8 September 2014.