BUSINESS

Intel buys password manager PasswordBox; financial details not disclosed

12/01/2014 12:55 EST | Updated 01/31/2015 05:59 EST
MONTREAL - A Canadian company is looking to accelerate the development and use of its password management system after being acquired by Intel Corp.

PasswordBox has been downloaded 14 million times since its debut about 18 months ago, but CEO and co-founder Daniel Robichaud said Intel can help increase the company's growth toward its goal of attracting one billion users.

"They are working on some innovative things and we're going to be able to tap into some of the innovation to do something that is going to be truly unique," he said in an interview Monday.

Financial details of Intel's acquisition of PasswordBox were not disclosed. The deal incorporates the Montreal-based company into Intel's security software business, which includes McAfee.

Robichaud said the company which employs 44 workers is doubling its space as it looks to hire experienced developers who are willing to relocate to Montreal.

The company was founded in 2012 and won the best mobile app at this year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

In addition to managing passwords, PasswordBox can also store and encrypt credit card information for quicker checkouts when shopping online.

Online identity and password management is a growing issue as companies seek to protect shoppers' personal information from hackers. Retailers like Target and Home Depot have been hacked while smaller companies have faced intrusions into their systems as well.

"We want to become the entry point for people's digital lives so you log into PasswordBox and then you don't need to do anything (because) you're logged into everything instantly."

Consulting firm Deloitte says many passwords are vulnerable to hacking because 10,000 of the most common passwords can access nearly 98 per cent of all accounts.

Mark Hocking, vice-president and general manager of safe identity at Intel Security, said the company is committed to growing PasswordBox's team in Montreal.

"Intel has lots of different employees that do lots of different things, but by bringing the PasswordBox team into my group we're able to accelerate the efforts that we have and get a solution into the hands of consumers much more quickly," he added.

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Note to readers: This is a corrected story. An earlier version incorrectly stated the number of PasswordBox employees.