Cyberhaven launches channel-focused data tracing solution for trade secret protection

Cyberhaven also announced the close of their Series A funding round for what they term the industry's first Data Behavior Analytics solution. While they are still in proof-of-concept stage, most of their sales go through channel partners.

Today, Palo Alto-based Cyberhaven is formally launching what they term the industry’s first Data Behavior Analytics [DaBA] solution. It features a data tracing technology, and out of the gate is focused on helping organizations locate and protect their trade secrets. The goal is to eventually move into much broader use cases. And the plan is to do so with a channel-first strategy. Most of their sales go through channel partners out of the gate, and while they are not working with MSSPs yet, that is a central plan of the Go-to-Market strategy going forward.

“When we started the company, we had a vision to help enterprises solve data security issues and avoid data exfiltration leaks,” said Volodymyr Kuznetsov, Cyberhaven’s CEO. “As we started talking to CISOs – I had over 100 in my CRM – we discussed why despite all of the money spent why these leaks still happen. That gave us a lot of insight. Data security and data protection are lagging behind other domains of security like endpoint protection and other kinds of security. Today, every company knows what kind of endpoint and identity systems they have. But they don’t know what data they have.”

Kuztnetsov said that since they started development, the problem has only become worse since because cloud and SaaS have exploded.

“Every single piece of data is not in one place, but thousands of places – in Google Drives, and mail attachments – and that’s just with small companies. The biggest challenge is the moment that data gets moved to another location, the protection is lost. Protection doesn’t really follow data today.”

This is what Cyberhaven’s DaBA is designed to do.

“Our technology at its core gives you visibility into the data in a way that no one else can do – as it’s being moved,” Kuznetsov said. “We track all of it. Customers can find where it went, where it came from, and where it left. DaBA looks at the behaviour of the data. It’s the information itself that’s being tracked – not by comparing the content, but just by observing it.”

Kuznetsov said that this was incredibly hard to design.

“Enterprise digital rights management half solves it by putting every document under encryption, but it never really succeeded,” he said. “We wanted from the get-go to make it happen – and not make companies change the way they interact with data in order to use it, as they need to do with DLP and CASB solutions. That’s what makes it difficult, in order to make it work at enterprise scale.”

Out of the gate, Cyberhaven is focusing on a very specific use case, but that’s really a tactical decision and doesn’t reflect a belief that’s the only sweet spot of the offering.

“When we started to sell, we looked at where the budgets are, and the advantages that our technology has, where it’s easiest to show,” Kuznetsov said. “In the short term, we are focusing on companies that want to protect their trade secrets. So it’s not for compliance, but for companies who want to protect their intellectual property like financial data and M&A data, product and trade secrets, industrial designs and legal documents.”

The long term vision is much broader.

“We think that this technology is really the missing piece of data security and should be foundational,” Kuznetsov stated. “It can protect not just trade secrets but other kinds of data. The real goal is to make it super easy for enterprises to adopt us.”

Most early stage startups, even ones that ultimately plan to broaden into a ful channel sales model, still sell direct in their proof-of-concept stage. Cyberhaven is one of the exceptions to that rule.

“Our Go-to-Market is centred around the channel,” Kuznetsov stated. “We started selling to early adopters early this year – about a dozen companies, with Motorola being a public one. About 90% of our customers are through channels. We started selling through them from the get-go. We have been working with VARs in getting in front of customers. They help us early in the funnel, and also help us to close.”

The longer term plan is to make aggressive use of the MSSP channel, but they aren’t there yet.

“MSSPs are an excellent match for us because they are their customers’ security teams,” Kuznetsov said. “They will be the  key to our longer term strategy. We don’t work with them yet. But we plan to work with them extensively going forward.”

Cyberhaven has their eye on the Canadian market, and Kuznetsov has spent a lot of time in Toronto over the past year.

“We have a couple customers in the pipeline in Canada,” he said. “We don’t have an active partnership in Canada yet, but we do have a couple of potential ones.”

The $13 million Series A round was co-led by Vertex Ventures and Costanoa Ventures, with participation from Crane Venture Partners and elite angel investors, including Facebook’s former Chief Security Officer Alex Stamos, Veritas’ co-founder and Facebook’s former VP of infrastructure engineering Jeff Rothschild, and CASB market pioneer Kamal Shah.  In Sik Rhee, General Partner at Vertex Ventures, will join Cyberhaven’s board.

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