To understand what makes Finjan Mobile and its offerings unique, it is essential to know a bit about the history of its parent company, Finjan Holdings, Inc., a cybersecurity technology company with a rich 20-year history. Back in the mid- 1990’s the company pioneered behavior-based threat detection as well as various other dynamic, real-time web and network security concepts which have become prevalent in the cybersecurity market today.
The company was founded by serial entrepreneur Shlomo Touboul, who entered a competition hosted by Sun Microsystems to help them create programs for Java. Instead of focusing on developing new programs, Shlomo discovered that on the back end there were many holes which would require a different type of security for protection. Out of this, Finjan was formed. The company launched in 1996 in Israel with the innovation of behavior-based threat detection by focusing on proactively detecting risks by identifying patterns and behaviors of malicious content. One year later, Finjan relocated its headquarters to San Jose, California, where it patented its landmark technology and began providing software web solutions and hardware to the enterprise market.
In 2008, as the hardware market began consolidating, Finjan sold off its hardware division to M86 which subsequently merged into Trustwave and more recently was purchased by Singapore Telecom. As part of this acquisition, Finjan retained all of its intellectual property assets but was put under a non-compete and as such, spent the next phase of its business licensing its technology.
Leading the Way
The non-compete was lifted in March of 2015 and Finjan moved quickly and decisively back into the world of development with the formation of its subsidiary Finjan Mobile. At this point in time, security software and hardware segments of the cybersecurity industry were rapidly moving toward a tipping point of maturity, and the market was undergoing a faster pace of consolidation than ever before. Given the uptrend in mobile device usage coupled with the significant amount of transient corporate data, the average mobile user presents and represents high risks of data loss through hacking.
Bringing Privacy to the Internet Users
The goal with Finjan Mobile’s first product, a secure browser called VitalSecurity, was to protect consumer mobile devices from malicious content from the Internet, while remaining easy to access and easy to use. Unlike most mobile applications, VitalSecurity was intended to bring transparency to Internet users with the promise of not collecting user data. Since the initial launch in June 2015, Finjan has listened to customer feedback and released several updates and new generations of the application. VitalSecurity Gen 3.7 was launched in June 2017, building on Finjan’s patented technology to offer the ability to block trackers associated with advertising, analytics, content, and social. This significant update provided passcode access, menu bars, browsing history, and detailed virus information to educate users about potentially malicious sites. These versions of VitalSecurity were downloaded more than 180,000 times.
Growing by Leaps and Bounds
While mobile development has been internally focused to-date, Finjan Mobile has not lost sight of the fact that in order to grow more rapidly, it must consider go-to-market partnerships and acquisition candidates. As such, in April 2017, Finjan signed a go-to-market partnership with Avira, a German multinational security software company that provides antivirus software, internet security, privacy, identity, and performance tools for computers, smartphones, servers, and networks, delivered as both software and cloud-based services.
Providing an Affordable and Easy to Use VPN Platform
Avira provides Finjan with its Virtual Private Network (VPN) platform for distribution and sale by Finjan Mobile as part of Finjan’s VitalSecurity™ suite of product offerings. The companies also entered into a confidential crosslicense under their respective patents. Finjan’s partnership with Avira enabled its September 2017 launch of the latest version of its mobile browser: VitalSecurity Gen 4.0 – “VitalSecurityVPN” – in which Finjan Mobile integrated Avira’s VPN into its secure, feature-rich browser to offer enhanced mobile security and user protection.
With VitalSecurityVPN, users are protected against multiple threats. Finjan Mobile’s subscription service is easy to use, affordably priced, and can be used amongst many devices. The browser also allows the user to select from numerous virtual locations when connecting to the VPN. While there are mobile browsers and standalone VPN apps available in the Apple and Google Play stores, VitalSecurityVPN is the first browser to combine these features into one, so users can enable/disable VPN while browsing the Internet – all without leaving the app.
Moving forward, Finjan Mobile will continue to add additional privacy and security features, offer even more virtual locations throughout the U.S. and abroad through which to connect to VPN, translate its app into many popular languages to offer it overseas, and build a premium suite of mobile security consumer products. Over time, Finjan Mobile’s goal is to ultimately move into the enterprise market. As the mobile market expands, companies are increasingly embracing platforms such as mobile device management systems to manage corporate data on employeeowned devices. In order to be successful, companies must be able to optimize mobile platforms while keeping corporate data safe on their employees’ personal devices. This is where VitalSecurityVPN, with features designed specifically for the enterprise, will fit in.
Finjan’s decades of experience in cybersecurity have enabled the company to gain a unique perspective on the industry and almost watch in slow motion as the market has consolidated and transitioned. Finjan’s choice to move its enterprise-grade technology into the hands of the consumer was deliberate – as mobile moves toward replacing desktop as the number one platform for users to access the Internet, mobile security risks are rising and the demand for solutions is following suit.
Meet the CEO
Phil Hartstein is President and Chief Executive Officer of Finjan Holdings, Inc. and oversees the direction and management of current assets and future investments as well as working with the company’s executive management team to execute the shareholders vision as a public technology company. Mr. Hartstein has worked in a number of technology and intellectual property related roles for over a decade. He started with a boutique IP law firm, worked in an inhouse IP function for a VC funded startup, spent time in IP consulting and IP brokerage firms, and prior to joining Finjan spent four years with two groups focused on bringing both private and public market capital, expertise, and credibility in licensing and enforcing patent rights on behalf of owners. Mr. Hartstein holds a BS in industrial technology from California Polytechnic, San Luis Obispo. He is an active participant in industry organizations, is regularly invited to speak on a number of patent monetization related topics from thirdparty litigation financing to capital market trends, and is a named inventor and patent holder with more than twodozen pending and issued patents across a number of disciplines.