Channel investors, Content, Threat Intelligence

Booz Allen Spins Out SnapAttack Threat Hunting Cybersecurity Business

Booz Allen Hamilton, which operates a Top 250 MSSP unit, has spun out its SnapAttack threat hunting and detection company to become a standalone business. Booz Allen is maintaining a channel partnership and a "significant" minority stake SnapAttack, though the percentage stake and valuation were not disclosed.

Ironically, the spin-out comes as Booz Allen seeks to acquire additional cybersecurity businesses. Earlier deals include buying Liberty IT Solutions for healthcare IT consulting, and cybersecurity services provider Tracepoint.

SnapAttack Threat Hunting Business Overview

In addition to Booz Allen, key investors in the SnapAttack business include Volition Capital and Strategic Cyber Ventures.

The SnapAttack business spans a SaaS-based platform along with a cybersecurity team who are focused on proactive threat hunting, detection-as-code, and purple teaming. SnapAttack was developed and launched publicly by Booz Allen DarkLabs―a team of security researchers, threat hunters, penetration testers, reverse engineers, network analysts, and data scientists.

SnapAttack’s original developers -- Chief Technology Officer Fred Frey and Chief Product Officer Tim Nary -- continue to lead The SnapAttack product development team. Booz Allen will be the primary channel partner for SnapAttack to its federal client base. Overall headcount figures for SnapAttack were not disclosed.

Booz Allen Executives Describe Threat Hunting Spin-Out

In a prepared statement about the spin-out, Booz Allen Chief Innovation Officer Susan Penfield said:

“Spinning out products like SnapAttack is one example of how we incubate internally and scale externally―an approach that allows us to focus on our strength of developing leading technology, then carefully identifying the best opportunities in the market for its long-term growth. In doing so, we empower Booz Allen’s innovators to create and scale leading-edge products and obtain an equity stake in the products they help build.”

Added Patrick Gorman, executive VP and a leader within Booz Allen's cybersecurity business:

“SnapAttack addresses a critical requirement for organizations that need to move quickly, collaborate, and get continuously better at detecting and defending against sophisticated cyber threats. SnapAttack will now have even more opportunity to scale at the pace of clients, address urgent threat detection needs, and access a broader ecosystem of innovators and capital investment to help it grow as the industry standard in proactive security and hacker tradecraft.”

Looking ahead, Booz Allen plans to spend about $4 billion between April 2022 and March 2025, largely on acquisitions, The Wall Street Journal indicated. That is up from the $1.3 billion it spent in total during the past four fiscal years — and most of that money went to share buybacks and dividends, The Journal noted.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.