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Why FireEye Shares Jumped as Much as 10% Higher Today

By Anders Bylund – Aug 23, 2018 at 4:09PM

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The data security expert is helping Google and Facebook hunt down fake online accounts with hidden links to the Iranian government.

What happened

Shares of cybersecurity specialist FireEye (MNDT) jumped 9.9% higher on Thursday afternoon, peaking near 2:30 p.m. EDT. The stock surged after Alphabet's (GOOG -3.29%) (GOOGL -2.75%) Google published a blog post detailing how FireEye helped the company identify and shut down a network of online accounts with secret links to the Iranian government. The stock had cooled down to a 6.4% gain by 3:30 p.m. EDT.

So what

Google's blog highlighted how the company limits and removes online accounts that are working to influence public and political views through the use of fraudulent identities, outright hacking attempts, and other nefarious methods. Over the last two months, FireEye has helped the company find and shut down several Gmail, YouTube, Blogger, and Google+ accounts with undercover links to the Iranian government via the state-run Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting media hub. This security sweep relied on tools and data analysis from FireEye.

Several blue padlock icons on a computer screen, all locked, with an unlocked red one in the center

Image source: Getty Images.

Now what

Earlier this week, social media giant Facebook (META -1.19%) said that FireEye had been instrumental in closing down several hundred "misleading" accounts promoting Iranian and Russian interests under false credentials or identities.

When two of the world's largest and most sophisticated tech companies publicly lean on FireEye's expertise to run down these bad actors, it's great public relations for the security firm. It's no surprise to see share prices surging on these reports, which should help FireEye fortify its reputation as a leading expert in complex digital security matters.

Suzanne Frey, an executive at Alphabet, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Anders Bylund owns A shares of Alphabet. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Alphabet (A and C shares), and Facebook. The Motley Fool also recommends FireEye. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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