Opera buys SurfEasy in bid to build software that boosts online privacy

The Norwegian maker of the Opera web browser buys Canadian VPN specialist SurfEasy.

Opera Software has acquired SurfEasy Inc, a Toronto-based company that provides VPN software for smartphones, tablets, and computers.

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The Norwegian software maker produces the Opera desktop and mobile web browser, which is used by more than 350 million people worldwide.

A VPN (Virtual Private Network) provides an added layer of internet security by encrypting all internet traffic sent to and from a device.

Opera CEO Lars Boilesen said the acquisition would help the company develop new products focused on protecting user data.

"Privacy and security has always been top of mind for Opera's users, making the acquisition of SurfEasy a seamless fit. Opera has evolved beyond our browser roots and this step will add a critical building block towards a broader portfolio of applications," he said.

As well as the web browser, Opera also makes software aimed at content distribution for telecoms operators, a mobile ad platform, and SDKs for TVs.

Last year Opera bought AdColony for $75m, to boost its ability to provide mobile video ads.

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