Someone ‏just tweeted about funny IT Security company names, and – believe it or not – Balabit was on the list. No problem, we understand French humor – especially because our French colleagues already explained Balabit’s meaning in French…sometimes it is hard to be a global company 

This tweet also made us think: have we ever shared the true story how Balabit became Balabit and what does it mean? Now we unveil the mystery…but would like to ask you to chose the story you believe is truth from the 3 options below. We also wanna have fun.

First of all: a short company background (you’ll need this info for voting)

Today Balabit IT Security is  a global leader in the development of privileged activity monitoring, trusted logging and proxy-based gateway technologies to help protect customers against internal and external threats and meet security and compliance regulations. The company has three product lines, the syslog-ng trusted multiplatform logging infrastructure, Shell Control Box activity monitoring tool for privileged access and Zorp Gateway, a network firewall.

Balabit is also known as “the syslog-ng company”, based on the company’s flagship product, the open source log server application, which is used by more than 850 000 companies worldwide and became the globally acknowledged de-facto industry standard. Balabit also provides support, for the syslog-ng Premium Edition and its appliance (syslog-ng Store Box). For instance, Air France, Boeing,, European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company, NASA, Svenska Handelsbanken and Telenor have chosen syslog-ng as a central log server to meet industry or compliance regulations. So, syslog-ng is well-known in the Unix and Linux arena among sysadmins, IT security experts, those responsible for system management. Not only technical guys, but many CIO’s have also heard about syslog-ng, as it can help organizations gain valuable business intelligence from the unstructured, massive log files, enabling existing SIEM to be more effective and meeting compliance regulations.

Balabit IT Security was founded in 2000 in Budapest, Hungary, Europe. CEO of Balabit, Balázs Scheidler, earned a degree in computer engineering and started to develop the syslog-ng log server application during his university studies. Balázs, as a member of the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) logging workgroup and the CEE Board (Common Event Expression Board), an advisory body collaborating with logging tool and operating system vendors and the United States government, he plays an active role in development of industry standards.

Voting options

 Please read through the stories below, and at the bottom of the page vote for the one you think is true. You can vote until 30 July.


Balabit got its name after the biggest lake in Central-Europe, called Balaton The founders of the company always knew that they would like to enter the international market with their security software solutions. Balaton is a well known and popular summer resort, and they just added a “Bit” word because they wanted to provide a bit from the same feeling to their customers: sunshine, happiness, relaxation when they are using Balabit products.

 So, Balabit =BALA(ton)+BIT.


Balabit is named after its CEO, Balázs Scheidler. Balázs is known as “Bazsi” on mailing lists and community members, but he noticed that his name is difficult to remember for the non-Hungarians and “Bazsi” is often mistyped. That is why sometimes he writes his name at it is pronounced in English Balage, plus added a “Bit” word referring that the company’s activity is IT-related (bit and byte).

 So, Balabit =BALA(ge)+BIT


Balabit in Hungarian means “something” pronounced by a person who has a cold – something like “sobtin’ ” instead of “something”.

When the company was founded, before going to the registry court the owners needed to chose a company name – which did not exist yet. They sat down for a brainstorming. Bazsi – as always – was busy with trying something new in the syslog-ng logging solution or in the Zorp Firewall, that he already had started to develop that time, so just said to the co-founder “When you are at the court, just say something”. In Hungarian “say something” means “mondjál valamit”. But if someone has a cold, as Bazsi did that time, it sounds like “bongyá balabit”. The co-founder, when at the court, remembered the only result of the brainstorming and said that “something” (“balabit”).

So, Balabit=SOBTIN’.