Cloud data protection and visibility leader CipherCloud today announced the finalization of $50M in funding in a round led by Transamerica Ventures. Delta Partners joined the round with additional participation from existing investors Andreessen Horowitz and T-Venture. The funding will be used to support the company’s explosive growth in verticals that include banking, healthcare, pharmaceuticals and telecommunications as noted by CipherCloud CEO Praveen Kothari in the press release announcing the funding raise. In addition to cloud data protection as represented by “encryption, tokenization, activity monitoring, data loss prevention (DLP) and malware detection,” CipherCloud specializes in monitoring of cloud users as well as the discovery of cloud-based applications used within a specific infrastructure with a view toward identifying applications that may not have been approved by the relevant organization’s IT department. The $50M funding raise validates CipherCloud’s leadership position in the cloud security market and positions it strongly to expand into markets in Europe and the Asia-Pacific. In addition to protecting cloud infrastructures, CipherCloud offers dedicated cloud protection solutions for applications such as Salesforce, Box, Microsoft Office 365, and ServiceNow.
This week, CipherCloud announced the availability of Cloud Discovery, a product that gives enterprises insight into the set of cloud applications used by their employees. In addition to enumerating the cloud applications that employees use, Cloud Discovery provides customers with a risk score associated with each of the cloud applications used by its employees. Based on over 10 variables, the risk score identifies the degree of security associated with each cloud platform toward the end of identifying cloud applications that pose a security threat to the company’s IT infrastructure and data. The screenshot below illustrates a sample Cloud Discovery dashboard as follows:
Conceived as an expansion of its Discover, Protect and Monitor platform, Cloud Discovery constitutes a free product offering from CipherCloud that extends the ability of the “Discover, Protect and Monitor” platform to identify potential security threats before they morph into more significant security breaches. The Discover, Protect and Monitor platform provides customers with analytics that alert them to uses of their platform that may suggest security threats such as aberrant usage patterns as represented by application usage, unusually high data flows or suspicious alterations to existing security protocols and permissions. Cloud Discovery empowers IT administrators to perform early stage analysis of the range of cloud applications used by employees by detecting usage of any applications by means of the analysis of log and machine data in collaboration with Splunk, the machine data analytics company that went public in April 2012. Overall, Cloud Discovery constitutes yet another enhancement and key differentiator for the CipherCloud platform that, as part of its Discover, Protect and Monitor product offering, delivers cloud analytics alongside CipherCloud’s core encryption product. With the release of Cloud Discovery, CipherCloud continues to sharpen its branding and value proposition as an integrated cloud security platform as opposed to a pure encryption play, which renders the company even more appealing for customers and investors, particularly given the intensity of contemporary concerns about potential security breaches associated with using cloud-based service providers and applications.
CipherCloud recently announced an expansion of its strategy for protecting cloud-based data by revealing details of a product that extends the capabilities of its data discovery solution on salesforce.com’s AppExchange, announced in November. This week’s announcement renders its pre-existing data discovery functionality available to any cloud platform and additionally highlights the “protect” and “monitor” components of its cloud security strategy. Rather than handing organizations a generic cloud security platform, CipherCloud delivers a solution that allows customers to tailor the types of security monitoring to the specificities of its business operations and organizational culture by providing analysts with a user friendly interface for detecting anomalous behavior. The innovation enabled by CipherCloud’s data discovery functionality is that companies can customize the alerts and warning messages regarding breaches of security to their data stacks, technology platforms and usage patterns. Data discovery, however, represents only one part of CipherCloud’s cloud protection strategy as illustrated below:
The other components of CipherCloud’s platform include protection in the form of AES-256 bit encryption, proprietary data loss prevention technology, key management and anti-malware technology and ongoing monitoring of the health of the infrastructure in question. Importantly, CipherCloud delivers searchable strong encryption using natural language searches. CipherCloud’s searchable strong encryption enables users to search encrypted data using wildcards, boolean searches and natural language without additional, cumbersome deployments of applications or databases. As illustrated above, CipherCloud’s “Discover, Protection, Monitor” solution can accommodate a vast variety of cloud infrastructures and protect data stored in public, hybrid and private cloud environments. The key differentiator, however, is its data discovery capabilities and ability to empower customers to complement its encryption functionality with advanced analytics for retrospective and prospective detection of security threats.
CipherCloud today announces the launch of data discovery capabilities by means of a solution deployed on Salesforce.com’s AppExchange. CipherCloud customers will be able to use its data discovery tool to run analytics on applications and data infrastructures within its purview toward the end of proactively responding to abnormal usage patterns that suggest possible security risks. The tool allows customers to configure the parameters of rules and alerts in order to customize the data discovery functionality for the usage patterns specific to their user base. CipherCloud’s data discovery solution extends the capabilities of its data privacy, security and encryption services for cloud applications by giving customers access to data visualizations regarding user and platform activity as illustrated below:
The three data discovery charts identify top users by type of user activity, anomalous activities and the most widely exported reports. Here, examples of anomalous activities include excessive downloads and after hours usage, although the software’s capability to customize the meaning of anomalous renders the solution applicable to a vast variety of use cases for identifying suspicious activities and processes.
CipherCloud’s launch of its data discovery solution on the AppExhange platform builds on a recent product enhancement that delivers encryption to data prior to its transmission to Amazon Web Services, and specifically, AWS products such as the Amazon S3, RDS and EBS. The data discovery solution adds one more weapon to CipherCloud’s roster of products for protecting the security of cloud-based data, and represents a useful complement to its AES-256 bit encryption services, which allow customers to retain control of the encryption keys as opposed to to the cloud platform vendor on which a solution is deployed. Expect CipherCloud to continue to expand its data loss protection (DLP) and encryption services, particularly as the market for cloud security products explodes in the wake of increasing cloud adoption and elevated customer concerns over cloud security.
Today, cloud security vendor CipherCloud announced an enhancement to its relationship with Box whereby Box customers can now take advantage of CipherCloud’s AES 256-bit encryption functionality. The announcement means that customers can now enjoy military-grade encryption that renders their data practically inaccessible to the prying eyes of unauthorized users of any kind. CipherCloud’s solution uses Box APIs to track and encrypt data as it enters the CipherCloud platform in conjunction with customer-based rules that determine which data is deemed sensitive and requires encryption. Moreover, CipherCloud’s encryption solution for Box allows users to configure a range of automated settings for sensitive data that include sharing restrictions, alerts, data quarantine and automated encryption, all of which are configured through the Box interface itself. In contrast to offerings whereby the cloud vendor retains access to the encryption keys, CipherCloud allows customers to retain the encryption keys. Because customers retain control of the encryption keys for data stored in Box, authorized users can access the encrypted data at any time, giving customers greater control with respect to data access. CipherCloud’s encryption solution for Box supports mobile devices and additionally boasts configurable notifications for instances of potential security breaches.
CipherCloud claims an impressive array of data loss protection (DLP) services for a range of cloud platforms that include Amazon Web Services, Salesforce, Gmail and Office 365. Today’s Box announcement builds upon its existing DLP solution for Box and claims a competitive edge over CipherCloud’s competitors by virtue of its streamlined integration with the Box platform. The company currently claims over 2 million users in 14 countries and 10 industries. CipherCloud is backed by venture capital firms Andreessen Horowitz, Index Ventures, and T-Venture and has raised $31.4 million in capital to date. As concerns about cloud data security proliferate given recent disclosures of government agency surveillance alongside internal and external breaches of enterprise data, CipherCloud should be expected to consolidate its position in the cloud data security space, particularly in light of its recent AES 256-bit encryption offering.