Narus (company)

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Narus Inc.
Number of locations
United States, India
ProductsOriginally a company focused on telecommunications billing and customer market intelligence. After 2001 the company pivoted towards providing network intelligence gathering software to governments around the world.

Narus Inc. was a software company and vendor of big data analytics for cybersecurity.


In 1997, Ori Cohen, Vice President of Business and Technology Development for VDONet, founded Narus with Stas Khirman in Israel.[1] Presently, they are employed with Deutsche Telekom AG and are not members of Narus' Executive Team.[2][3][4] In 2010, Narus became a subsidiary of Boeing, located in Sunnyvale, California.[5][6] In 2015, Narus was sold to Symantec.[7]


In 2004, Narus employed former Deputy Director of the National Security Agency, William Crowell as a director. From the Press Release announcing this:[8]

Crowell is an independent security consultant and holds several board positions with a variety of technology and technology-based security companies.
Since 11 September 2001, Crowell served on the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Task Force on Terrorism and Deterrence, the National Research Council Committee on Science and Technology for Countering Terrorism and the Markle Foundation Task Force on National Security in the Information Age.

Narus Software[edit]

Narus software primarily captures various computer network traffic in real time and analyzes results.[9][10]

Prior to 9/11 Narus built carrier-grade tools to analyze IP network traffic for billing purposes, to prevent what Narus called "revenue leakage". Post-9/11 Narus added more "semantic monitoring abilities" for surveillance.


Narus is noted for having created NarusInsight, a supercomputer system, whose installation in AT&T's San Francisco Internet backbone gave rise to a 2006 class action lawsuit by the Electronic Frontier Foundation against AT&T, Hepting v. AT&T.[11]

System specification and capabilities[edit]

Some features of NarusInsight include:[12]

  • Scalability to support surveillance of large, complex IP networks (such as the Internet).
  • High-speed packet processing performance, which enables it to sift through the vast quantities of information that travel over the Internet.
  • Normalization, correlation, aggregation and analysis provide a model of user, element, protocol, application and network behaviors, in real-time. That is it can track individual users, monitor which applications they are using (e.g., web browsers, instant messaging applications, e-mail) and what they are doing with those applications (e.g., which web sites they have visited, what they have written in their emails/IM conversations), and see how users' activities are connected to each other (e.g., compiling lists of people who visit a certain type of web site or use certain words or phrases in their e-mail messages.
  • High reliability from data collection to data processing and analysis.
  • NarusInsight's functionality can be configured to feed a particular activity or IP service such as security lawful intercept or even Skype detection and blocking.
  • Compliance with CALEA and ETSI.
  • Certified by Telecommunication Engineering Center (TEC) in India for lawful intercept and monitoring systems for ISPs.

The intercepted data flows into NarusInsight Intercept Suite.[13] This data is stored and analyzed for surveillance and forensic analysis.

Other capabilities include playback of streaming media (i.e., VoIP), rendering of web pages, examination of e-mail and the ability to analyze the payload/attachments of e-mail or file transfer protocols. Narus partner products, such as Pen-Link, offer the ability to quickly analyze information collected by the Directed Analysis or Lawful Intercept modules.

A single NarusInsight machine can monitor traffic equal to the maximum capacity (10 Gbit/s) of around 39,000 256k DSL lines or 195,000 56k telephone modems. But, in practical terms, since individual internet connections are not continually filled to capacity, the 10 Gbit/s capacity of one NarusInsight installation enables it to monitor the combined traffic of several million broadband users.

According to a year 2007 company press release, the latest version of NarusInsight Intercept Suite (NIS) is "the industry's only network traffic intelligence system that supports real-time precision targeting, capturing and reconstruction of webmail traffic... including Google Gmail, MSN Hotmail and Yahoo! Mail".[14] However, currently most webmail traffic can be HTTPS encrypted, so the content of messages can only be monitored with the consent of service providers.

NarusInsight can also perform semantic analysis of the same traffic as it is happening, in other words analyze the content, meaning, structure and significance of traffic in real time. The exact use of this data is not fully documented, as the public is not authorized to see what types of activities and ideas are being monitored. Ed Snowden's June 2013 releases about the PRISM surveillance program have made clear however that Narus has played a central role.


Narus provided Telecom Egypt with deep packet inspection equipment, a content-filtering technology that allows network managers to inspect, track and target content from users of the Internet and mobile phones, as it passes through routers. The national telecommunications authorities of both Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are global Narus customers.[15]


AT&T wiretapping room[edit]

Narus supplied the software and hardware used at AT&T wiretapping rooms, according to whistleblowers Thomas Drake,[16] and Mark Klein.[17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Ori Cohen: Executive Profile & Biography". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 17 September 2011. He served as Vice President of Business and Technology Development for VDOnet and Chief Executive Officer for IntelliCom Ltd.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-08-06. Retrieved 2013-09-06.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ Fogel, Raphael (11 July 2006). "Ori Cohen, private eye". Haaretz. Retrieved 17 September 2011. It was founded in 1997 by Dr Ori Cohen, Stas Khirman and four other guys in Israel.
  4. ^ "Executive Team". Narus. Archived from the original on 3 March 2013. Retrieved 25 February 2013.
  5. ^ "Boeing buying cybersecurity firm Narus". Bloomberg Businessweek. St. Louis. Associated Press. 8 July 2010. Archived from the original on 1 May 2011. Retrieved 18 September 2011. Boeing announced its second acquisition in as many weeks, saying it will buy anti-cyber attack software company Narus.
  6. ^ "Boeing Completes Acquisition of Narus". 29 July 2010. Retrieved 18 September 2011. Boeing (NYSE: BA) today announced it has completed its acquisition of Narus.
  7. ^ "Symantec Acquires Boeing's Cybersecurity Unit in a Bid to Boost Big Data Capabilities". Forbes. Retrieved 2016-03-28.
  8. ^ "Narus Appoints Former Deputy Director of the National Security Agency To Its Board of Directors". Archived from the original on February 6, 2005. Retrieved 2017-09-14.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  9. ^ "Boeing: Narus". Boeing. Archived from the original on September 2, 2011. Retrieved 17 September 2011. A wholly owned subsidiary of The Boeing Company, Narus is headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., and supports a global base of government and commercial customers.
  10. ^ "Narus Networks Private Limited: Private Company Information". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 17 September 2011. Narus Networks Private Limited provides real-time network traffic and analytics software used to protect against cyber attacks and threats aimed at large Internet Protocol networks.
  11. ^ "NSA Multi-District Litigation". Electronic Frontier Foundation. July 2011.
  12. ^ Key Features list of NarusInsight
  13. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-06-23. Retrieved 2013-03-15.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ "Narus Expands Traffic Intelligence Solution to Webmail Targeting". Reuters. 2007-12-10. Archived from the original on 2009-05-01. Retrieved 2008-02-13.
  15. ^ "One U.S. Corporation's Role in Egypt's Brutal Crackdown". 2011-01-28.
  16. ^ "Drake declaration in support of plaintiffs' motion". Electronic Frontier Foundation. 2012-07-02.
  17. ^ What was the Israeli involvement in collecting U.S. communications intel for NSA? The Marker, Haaretz, The Associated Press and Reuters, Jun. 8, 2013 at .retrieved on 7-18-13

External links[edit]