startups

10 Security Startups That Investors Are Funding


Investors-Throw-Money-at-Security-Startups

As long as security remains a top priority for enterprises, investors will continue to throw an endless supply of cash at security startups and companies. In a recent interview with SDxCentral, Deepak Jeevankumar, investment manager for Dell Technologies Capital, said: “Cybersecurity is one of the most heavily invested areas every year, and there are about 3,000 [security] startups across the world today by some accounts.”

And, according to Doug Cahill, the group director and senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG), there are a few reasons that investors are backing both early stage security companies and those that are demonstrating strong commercial tracking. “Cybersecurity continues to be the area of technology for which organization intend to increase spend the most,” he said. And there is an “opportunity for disruption enabled by the fragmentation of the cybersecurity market and customer propensity to change vendors.”

Indeed, in recent months security companies have seemingly dominated the investment playing field. We rounded up 10 of these companies, which in total racked in over $499 million in the last month alone.

WhiteSource

Amount Raised: $35 million
Funding Type: Series C
Date: October 17
Total Funding to Date: $46 million

WhiteSource is an open source security and license management company. The Israel-based company was founded in 2011 under the premise of better securing and managing open source components that aren’t served by traditional security tools. And as open source components become more mainstream, they are more vulnerable to attack.

WhiteSource helps prevent these attacks by automating the process of open source component selection, approval, and management. It also gives enterprise security teams better visibility into their open source usage.

With its recent $35 million series C funding round led by Susquehanna Growth Equity, WhiteSource intends to expand its services to a larger enterprise market. Currently, it claims an enterprise customer base of 500, which includes Microsoft, IBM, Comcast, and KPMG. It also plans to expand its global presence. Recently it has opened sales, marketing, and customer support operations in London and San Francisco.

Garrison

Amount Raised: $30 million
Funding Type: Series B
Date: October 15
Total Funding to Date: about $50 million

Named after a military term for troops defending a fortress, Garrison is a U.K.-based secure web browsing vendor. The company was founded in 2014 by David Garfield and Henry Harrison. The duo previously worked at national security company Detica prior to its acquisition by BAE Systems, where Garfield and Harrison established the cyber security business unit.

Garrison relies on hardware technology — which it calls Garrison SAVI, or silicon-assured video isolation — to enable safe web browsing. By using hardware, Garrison’s product can convert risky content to verifiable raw pixels at scale so threatening web content is never processed on the end-user’s endpoint device.

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The Series B, $30 million funding round was led by Dawn Capital. Garrison said it will use the round to expand its sales and marketing, grow its engineering team, and enhance its cloud offering. Initially, the technology was used by government and military customers — the U.K. government is a customer — but has since expanded into more markets. This includes organizations in banking, insurance, media, telecoms, and legal sectors.

Nyotron

Amount Raised: $10 million
Funding Type: Strategic investment
Date: October 11
Total Funding to Date: $41 million

Nyotron was founded Nir Gaist at age 17, who now serves as its CTO, and his brother Ofer Gaist, now COO. Gaist entered the security sector as a hacker at a young age, eventually studying at the Israeli Technion University at age 10.

Nyotron’s endpoint protection platform, Paranoid, protects from threats by mapping and learning what “good” network behavior looks like in an operating system. It learns a finite amount of “good” actions and then bans any behavior that falls outside of those actions.

The $10 million private investment came from Ingram Micro, a U.S. IT distributor, as part of a partnership between Nyotron and Ingram Micro. The two companies hold a distribution agreement for Ingram Micro to offer Nyotron technology in its cloud marketplace. This partnership, and the investment, are set to expand Nyotron’s global channel ecosystem, particularly in the U.S.

Demisto

Amount Raised: $43 million
Funding Type: Series C
Date: October 10
Total Funding to Date: $69 million

Demisto is focused on security orchestration, automation, and response (SOAR). The Cupertino, California-based company was founded in July 2015 and launched its enterprise platform in May 2017.

The platform enables end-users to automate day-to-day tasks by orchestrating actions across a number of integrated security tools to create automated playbooks. Demisto’s platform is intended for use cases in security operations centers. Most recently, it expanded this offering to include advanced cloud security, threat hunting, end-to-end automation of Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud security processes, and more.

Since founding, Demisto has experienced accelerated growth. In the first half of 2018, Demisto claims it has acquired more customers than it did during 2017. In 2017, it saw a 300 percent increase in customers from 2016. It intends to use the $43 million funding round to further accelerate the adoption and deployment of its platform, drive its global market growth, and take SOAR beyond security operations centers.

CloudKnox

Amount Raised: $10.75 million
Funding Type: Series unknown
Date: October 3
Total Funding to Date: $10.75 million

CloudKnox was founded in 2016, and it launched its cloud security platform on Oct. 3 in conjunction with the $10.75 million funding round led by ClearSky Security, Dell Technologies Capital, and Foundation Capital. The startup said it will use the funding to grow its engineering, sales, and marketing teams.

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CloudKnox’s platform uses activity-based access controls to reduce risks from compromised credentials, accidents, and insider threats in hybrid cloud environments. It relies on an identity automatization administration to detect a number of identities — including service accounts, APIs, bots, and employees — that have unused privileges. This is based on actual activities performed instead of static roles to allow for these privileges to be revoked if they are high-risk.

This identity privilege authorization is centralized and works on both private and public clouds. CloudKnox integrates with users’ existing IT workflow management tools.

Tanium

Amount Raised: $200 million
Funding Type: Private equity round
Date: October 2
Total Funding to Date: $6.5 billion

Tanium’s most recent $200 million funding round comes just months after a $175 million round in May. The company also closed a $100 million round in May 2017. The Oct. 2 funding round was led by Wellington Management, Baillie Gifford & Company, and Adage Capital Management. Tanium said the investment will be used to provide early investor and employee liquidity and for general corporate purposes.

Tanium is an endpoint security company. Its platform acts as a centralized hub for management network endpoint protection operations. Tanium’s platform aggregates infrastructure data to continuously create a picture of the user’s environment and security. It boasts a number of large enterprises as customers including Target, Barclays, and the U.S. Air Force.

Since its founding in 2007 by father-son team David and Orion Hindawi, the security startup has seen a bit of bad press surrounding its management and customer data. Last year, Tanium exposed data customer data during a demonstration of its software. And Bloomberg reported shortly after that a number of senior employees left the firm because of CEO Orion Hindawi’s “bullying management style.”

And this year, it was the target of an audit by the Pentagon to determine if government agencies followed proper contracting procedures in hiring Tanium. The status of the audit is unknown at this time.

Darktrace

Amount Raised: $50 million
Funding Type: Series E
Date: September 27
Total Funding to Date: $229.5 million

Darktrace specializes in artificial-intelligence- (AI) based security. Its Enterprise Immune System leverages self-learning AI and machine learning to detect and respond to threats across a number of environments. These environments include cloud and virtualized networks, IoT, and industrial control systems. It recently updated its platform with autonomous cloud response and protection against email attack campaigns.

The firm was founded in 2013. It’s based in Cambridge, U.K. and has a second headquarters in San Francisco. Darktrace plans to use the recent $50 million funding round, led Vitruvian Partners, to expand its international presence and development.

Darktrace claims that its employee headcount has grown by 60 percent in the last year. In the same time period it has open eight new offices across the world and expanded its research and development efforts in Cambridge.

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Nozomi Networks

Amount Raised: $30 million
Funding Type: Series C
Date: September 27
Total Funding to Date: $53.8 million

This $30 million round for Nozomi Networks follows just months after a $15 million round in January. The Series C round was led by Giovanni Cannetta Roeder, its first institutional investor. Nozomi, which provides an industrial security platform, said it will use the investment to increase its global presence through sales and marketing efforts and expand its research and development efforts.

Nozomi’s industrial security platform uses both passive threat and anomaly detection and active detection. The active detection gives enterprises the ability to detect and monitor specific threats.

Founded in 2013, the San Francisco-based company serves a number of industrial verticals including utilities, oil and gas, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, mining, and more. Just this year, it began new partnerships with IBM, Atos, and Cisco, and it opened a number of new offices around the world.

Snyk

Amount Raised: $22 million
Funding Type: Series B
Date: September 25
Total Funding to Date: $32 million

London-based Synk is an open source security firm founded in 2015. The firm claims a developer base of 16,000; over 140,000 repositories on source code management platforms, including GitHub, Bitbucket, and GitLab; and 100,000 downloads a week.

Synk’s security offering focuses on fixing operations support system (OSS) components. It enables developers to search for vulnerabilities in the enterprises’ systems, with particular focus on their open source software, and block the vulnerabilities. Synk repairs security issues by drawing on its database of patches.

The $22 million Series B, led by Accel, comes seven months after its previous $7 million Series A round. Snyk said it will use the investment to scale its business across new ecosystems, improve customer support by growing its company headcount, expand its offering to protect runtime open source security, and grow the number of developers it can reach.

Sysdig

Amount Raised: $68.5 million
Funding Type: Series D
Date: September 12
Total Funding to Date: $121.5 million

The container security startup Sysdig launched in 2013 and debuted its Secure product in October 2017. The product is built on Sysdig’s Falco open source container security project, and it includes support for Kubernetes, Docker, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), and Mesos.

The latest version of Sysdig’s platform included vulnerability management, over 200 compliance checks, and security analytics to cloud-native environments and microservices for enterprise customers.

With the $68.5 million funding round led by Insight Venture Partners, Sysdig told SDxCentral it would “invest aggressively” in its technology platform and in its sales, marketing, and customer success initiatives, and expand its team.



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