While speaking last week with Al Pascual, SVP and Head of Fraud & Security at Javelin Strategy & Research, in a joint briefing with Steve Bearak, IdentityForce’s CEO, the words “big news” kept circulating throughout the discussion. And I couldn’t be more excited to officially share today’s BIG news, along with my thoughts on what EZShield’s acquisition of IdentityForce means for our customers, partners, and our most valued asset — our employees.
Relationships matter. When we embarked on this journey with IdentityForce, a sincere investment was made by both companies to understand each other’s business, vision and culture. This wasn’t a traditional acquisition. For us, we all approached this as a merger of two amazing companies — people, processes, and technology — to build what we have coined a “powerhouse in digital identity protection and cybersecurity.” I realize that many business professionals will experience either a merger or acquisition at least once in their lives. For me, this is the one I want EZShield, IdentityForce, and the industry to recognize as the poster child for how to do it right.
The identity theft protection space is pretty crowded and there have been some major events, like the Equifax breach, that have shined a light on data and personal information vulnerabilities. Earlier this year, we began to internally strategize and evaluate with our private equity owners, The Wicks Group (“Wicks”), how to fuse complementary capabilities and bring disruption to the market. One company led the pack for us: IdentityForce.
As a trusted, top-ranked leader in the identity theft protection space, the IdentityForce team shared our focus on being highly customer-centric, a commitment to excellence in everything they do, and a burning desire to accelerate and grow their business through product and service innovation.
Since joining EZShield over eight years ago, I’ve personally seen our company evolve not only in terms of our continuous focus on exceptional customer service and unwavering support of our partners but in our vision today of how we will introduce robust cybersecurity tools. We’re talking about going beyond the traditional packaging of cyber protection and what we have in mind will be game-changing for companies of all sizes, partners, and consumers. We’ll share more on that in the weeks and months ahead!
A Powerful Powerhouse: Digital Identity Theft Protection and Cybersecurity
It’s clear that both IdentityForce and EZShield are truly committed to a common vision that unites two best-in-class leaders focused on world-class client, partner, and member support, with solutions rooted in three pillars: integrity, security, and trust. Building a digital identity theft protection and cybersecurity powerhouse is a bold ambition, but one we both know the market is more than ready for.
Cybercrime is the biggest threat to companies around the world, and identity theft is a large part of the fallout. As technology continues to advance and more avenues for transmitting data emerge, we’re seeing exponential growth in fraud and identity crimes. According to Cybersecurity Ventures, global spending on cybersecurity will exceed $1 trillion over the next five years. The market for identity theft protection services is anticipated to reach more than $24 billion by 2025.
As cyber and identity crimes increase in number and complexity, our combined expertise and our superior Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) ratings will enable us to provide the strongest digital security measures available. That’s our commitment to all those we serve.
By uniting with IdentityForce, EZShield is able to substantially expand our market footprint and essentially become industry agnostic, while also retaining our foothold on small businesses and financial institutions. This merger will present the opportunity for us all — the IdentityForce and EZShield teams — to work jointly with consumers, strategic partners/resellers, benefit brokers, federal and state government agencies and breach clients.
There’s a significant opportunity here to add increased value to those we work with every day and to reinvent how we all need to protect ourselves, our families, our clients, and our partners — essentially all those we care about. Again, I’m personally very excited to see what our joint teams dream up and how we’ll work together to protect what matters most.
Before we go too far, I did want to take a moment to extend my sincere thanks to IdentityForce’s Steve Bearak, CEO and Co-founder, and his sister Judy Leary, President and Co-founder. Today’s best companies are employee-centric and what Steve and Judy have built since launching IdentityForce in 2005 has been nothing short of amazing. I’ve had the pleasure of spending one-on-one time with IdentityForce’s team and I’ve seen such poised passion, extreme talent, and ultimate dedication woven through every department.
Steve and Judy, you are giving me and the rest of the EZShield team, your most valuable asset and you have my promise that we will make you both very proud.
Perspective from the IdentityForce Frontline
by Steve Bearak, CEO, IdentityForce
Dale, I know our team, our members, our customers, and our partners are in great hands with you and the rest of the EZShield team. For us, it’s not just the past thirteen years we are passing on to you, but it’s a 40-year lineage that was started back in 1978 with the company our father founded. Back then, the business was focused on the development, implementation, and testing of security policy and procedure best practices, as well as best-in-class security equipment and systems. We’re so proud of the family business that has grown into the top-rated identity theft protection service. And, as the walls in our Framingham, MA office display, Identity Security Runs in the Family, we will never forget our roots.
Getting to know Dale and the EZShield team throughout our many meetings, breakfasts, lunches, and dinners since the beginning of 2018 has made both me and Judy (my sister and IdentityForce’s President and Co-Founder) increasingly excited about the future. Both the EZShield and IdentityForce teams are already collaborating and aligned on major projects that will transform how the industry views both digital identity theft protection and cybersecurity. I love how this merger, in all of our minds, is about unifying two world-class teams who won’t stop fighting for the protection of our combined customers, partners, and members.
It has been a privilege to lead IdentityForce — and one of my greatest honors to have built the team that got us to where we are today. I am personally looking forward to continuing the work we’ve done at IdentityForce and teaming up with EZShield to champion future successes.
Dale, you don’t need to be wished good luck. You already have the very best two teams that are now one.
For more information on EZShield’s acquisition of IdentityForce, read our joint press release.
We have also published a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) that provides more insight into IdentityForce being acquired by EZShield.