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U-M cyber security startup purchased by FICO

Mingyan Liu, left, is an engineering professor at U-M and chief science officer, and Wes Huffstutter, center, is CEO. At right is Manish Karir, chief technology officer. Images courtesy: QuadMetricsMingyan Liu, left, is an engineering professor at U-M and chief science officer, and Wes Huffstutter, center, is CEO. At right is Manish Karir, chief technology officer. Images courtesy: QuadMetricsANN ARBOR—QuadMetrics, a cyber risk security startup licensed from the University of Michigan in 2015, announced it has been purchased. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Analytic software company FICO of San Jose, Calif., bought QuadMetrics to help in its development of a FICO Enterprise Security Score. The scores will rank an organization's level of cyber security risk, the company said in a statement.

QuadMetrics leverages predictive analytics to monitor signals from open source and proprietary data sources to provide an overall security score for an enterprise, helping security professionals address gaps and enabling partners and insurers to understand a firm's security risk.

"We have built a system using state-of-the-art Internet measurement and predictive analytics techniques to enable quantitative security risk assessment as well as proactive measures. Ours is the only predictive solution currently on the market," said Mingyan Liu, QuadMetrics' chief science officer and a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at U-M's College of Engineering.
QuadMetrics uses technology developed at U-M with funding from the Department of Homeland Security and the National Science Foundation.

"While all organizations are leveraging both sophisticated software and expert guidance to protect themselves from cyber attacks, it is increasingly important that other dependent parties have a common means of assessing the effectiveness of those efforts," said QuadMetrics CEO Wes Huffstutter. "FICO's Enterprise Security Scores will provide the transparency, consistency and confidence required to strengthen the entire security ecosystem."

Doug Clare, vice president of cyber security solutions at FICO, said in a statement: "We're excited to have the QuadMetrics team—and their deep expertise—joining us in our efforts to fight cyber crime and help all organizations improve their visibility and insights into cyber risk. Just as the FICO Score gave credit markets a single metric for understanding credit risk, this product will give the industry a common view of enterprise cyber security risk."

Ken Nisbet, U-M associate vice president for tech transfer, said: "We're proud of the progress of Quadmetrics—a member of our 2015 class of U-M startups that received mentoring and resources from our Venture Center. Its progress is testament to the quality of the business concept, the startup team and the partnered assistance that helped it launch."