IT security giant Symantec announced yesterday that it plans to acquire the identity theft protection company LifeLock for $2.3 billion. The acquisition is aimed at meeting the changing needs in the consumer security market as the cyber threat landscape continues to evolve, Symantec said.
Founded in 2005, LifeLock has had several brushes with controversy over its history. For example, in December 2015, the company agreed to pay $100 million to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it had violated a 2010 federal court order against deceptive advertising practices. LifeLock said it currently has more than 4.4 million members who use its identity theft protection services.
Symantec, meanwhile, is in transition following the departure of president and CEO Michael Brown in April. Brown was replaced by Greg Clark, who formerly headed the Web security firm Blue Coat, which was acquired by Symantec this year for $4.65 billion as part of the company’s shift to a renewed focus on cybersecurity.
Merger Creates ‘World’s Largest Consumer Security Business’
In yesterday’s announcement, Symantec said the acquisition of LifeLock will create “the world’s largest consumer security business,” with combined estimated annual revenues of more than $2.3 billion. The deal, which has been approved by the boards of both companies, is expected to close in the first quarter of 2017.
“People’s identity and data are prime targets of cybercrime,” Symantec board chairman Dan Schulman said in a statement. “The security industry must step up and defend through innovation and vigilance. With the acquisition of LifeLock, Symantec adds a new dimension to its protection capabilities to address the expanding needs of the consumer marketplace.”
Together, the companies can do more for those who depend on them, said LifeLock president and CEO Hilary Schneider in a company blog post. “The combination of [Symantec brand] Norton and LifeLock will create…