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Proofpoint Signs Definitive Agreement to Acquire Tessian

October 2023 by Marc Jacob

Proofpoint Inc. announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Tessian, a specialize in the use of advanced AI to automatically detect and guard against both accidental data loss and evolving email threats. The acquisition is expected to close in late 2023 to early 2024, subject to customary closing conditions, including any required regulatory approvals.

Proofpoint protects organizations against social engineering attacks by applying award-winning AI and large language models (LLMs) to block threats and provide real-time threat insights. AI-based detection has proven to be notably effective in identifying threats targeting people, such as email fraud and supplier-based attacks, and preventing data loss due to negligent or malicious actions. With the acquisition of Tessian, Proofpoint will enhance its threat and information protection platforms by adding powerful layers of AI-powered defense that address risky user behaviors, including misdirected email and data exfiltration.

Misdirected emails (sending emails to the wrong recipient) and mis-attached files continue to be a leading cause of compliance violations and accidental data loss for organizations according to Ponemon research: in 2022 alone, 65% of all data loss incidents occurred via email, and nearly two-thirds of organizations experienced data loss or exfiltration due to an employee mistake on email. As a result, it takes security teams 48 hours, on average, to detect and remediate a data loss and exfiltration incident caused by employee negligence.

More than nine in 10 organizations have dealt with a data breach caused by an end-user error on email. Using behavioral understanding and machine learning, Tessian’s AI-powered email security platform will enhance Proofpoint’s email data loss prevention (DLP) offering by addressing accidental data loss and malicious insiders through its seamless Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace deployment. Tessian solutions include:

● Tessian Guardian: Protects sensitive data, helps customers meet regulatory compliance and confidentiality agreements, and eliminates the risk of reputational damage by preventing misdirected emails and mis-attached files.
● Tessian Enforcer: Automatically protects against data exfiltration and safeguards intellectual property without predefined rules or deny-lists.
● Tessian Defender: Context-aware, AI-based email defense that detects and prevents the full spectrum of email attacks, while providing end users with in-the-moment contextual warning banners to help them decide whether an email is safe.

Tessian’s solutions are expected to become part of Proofpoint’s offering upon the closing of the acquisition.

Piper Sandler is acting as financial advisor to Tessian.


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