Meet the newest members of the CyRise cybersecurity accelerator: Cohort 6
Join us in welcoming the most international cohort the CyRise accelerator has ever seen!
Teams hailing from six cities across the USA, Singapore, India, and Australia have overcome time differences and lingering pandemic restrictions, launching themselves wholeheartedly into the intensive 14-week program. They’re meeting cyber founders, CISOs, investors and subject matter experts in their quest for rapid global growth.
The areas of coverage include artificial intelligence and machine learning, infrastructure automation, breach and attack simulation, risk and compliance and cloud security.
The following six teams have been selected:
Founder: Freddy Ouzan
Location: Sunnyvale, California
The first US-based company to be accepted into CyRise, Apolyta’s Eligma tool helps security teams prepare against tomorrow’s cyberattacks. Instead of reproducing known attacks, Eligma generates unknown evolving attacks using its polymorphic engine.
“I’ve seen security managers evaluating their controls, so I know what they miss. The gap is huge, and there is no actual system to fill that gap,” says founder Freddy Ouzan.
Whilst Apolyta’s competitors are focused on reproducing the same attacks over and over again, Apolyta knows that preparing for tomorrow’s attack means predicting the unknown. Apolyta is building the next generation of breach and attack simulation; instead of running a list of predefined scenarios, security teams can generate unknown threats that help them prepare and train for the future.
“Apolyta can’t predict the future — but we can help prepare you for it,” adds Freddy.
Founders: Carlos Leyva Salas, John Kinsella, Chad Richts
cysense is on a mission to make security ‘super simple’.
“We spoke to dozens of startups and SMEs to identify why they aren’t doing much on cybersecurity even though attacks are always all over the news. We found the common trends were that they don’t know where to start; found current products too complicated or expensive, or simply had other things to worry about” says Carlos Leyva Salas, co-founder of cysense.
Carlos joined forces with Chad Richts — Insead MBA and a former security consultant, and John Kinsella — engineering leader and Silicon Valley entrepreneur — to create a solution that would simplify cybersecurity for business.
“Most companies see cybersecurity as a ‘technical risk’ rather than a business risk — one they may not fully understand, so they often rely on expensive consultants to interpret their compliance”, says Chad.
To make security simple, cysense connects to a client’s technology, determines their security posture, then builds a custom roadmap to achieve their security goals. The platform provides continuous guidance, automating a large portion of those mundane security-related tasks, and providing an easy way for users to demonstrate to customers and regulators that they have the right security in place.
Founders: Samantha Lengyel, Josh Fourie
Location: Canberra, Australia
Many companies make use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools, without a clear understanding of how the AI is getting its results. For example, most users couldn’t tell you if their AI has blindspots, where those blindspots may lie, or how much of an impact this is having on their business. Traditionally, such questions have been surprisingly difficult to answer, with companies generally relying on manual analysis, slide decks, reports, and meetings to audit their AI.
“I worry that potentially bad data work is the basis for critical decisions, and at the moment, no one can tell — because those systems are too hard to properly audit,” says co-founder Josh Fourie, who comes from a background in law.
“How do we apply law and policy to AI models we don’t fully understand?”
“It keeps us up at night that technology with the capacity to change the world is still behind walls, simply because teams cannot easily communicate their work,” says CEO and co-founder Samantha Lengyel.
Decoded.AI lets you see ‘under the hood’ of AI and machine learning models, so you can get visibility on where any biases may lie, and ensure you’re compliant with regulations.
Founders: Chethan Anand and Dr. Sashank Dara
Location: Bangalore, India
Many companies still perform their cyber risk assessments manually; a burdensome task that can only be completed a few times per year at best. That means most organisations do not know their security posture at any given time — a challenge Seconize seeks to solve.
“It was not about fixing issues and deploying more products, but understanding what your security posture is and responding accordingly,” says co-founder Chethan Anand, who joined forces with Dr. Sashank Dara to build the Seconize platform.
A pioneer of risk-based vulnerability management, Seconize offers continuous risk assessments in real time — helping companies reduce their cyber risk exposure, automate their internal compliance audits, and allocate their security spend where it counts.
Founders: Jeffrey Aven & Kieran Rimmer
Location: Melbourne, Australia
StackQL aims to solve cloud ‘asset sprawl’, simplifying cloud automation and security, and reducing cyber attack surface area. StackQL enables users to deploy, manage, query, secure and report upon cloud and SaaS resources using SQL.
“There’s not really a tool out there that lets you deploy and query assets across multiple clouds and services using a single, well-known language,” says serial founder Jeffrey Aven.
StackQL is product built “by engineers, for engineers”; and with two software startups already under his belt, Jeffrey is very familiar with what engineers need. Co-Founder Kieran Rimmer likewise has an extensive background in software engineering, and saw the need to reduce complexity. “Existing CI/CD tools are too complex and have a steep learning curve for users. StackQL solves problems that engineers face every day in a simple way.”
Founders: Mike Rahmati, Pierre Liddle, Paul Garner
Location: Sydney, Australia
Security leaders have so much incoming raw data to process — imagine constant security alerts from a range of origins, often in different parts of an organisation. There has never been a way to pull this disparate information together to see the big picture narrative; such as a threat actor about to strike.
It’s a Big Data problem — and Plerion is here to solve it.
Plerion brings disconnected security data together and adds meaningful context to answer customer’s most challenging security questions through natural language search.
The first ‘scale up’ to be welcomed into the CyRise Accelerator, Plerion recently burst out of stealth mode with the launch of its Beta Program. The company was founded by Mike Rahmati, a serial entrepreneur and co-founder of Cloud Conformity, Pierre Liddle, a former AWS security lead and Paul Garner, a commercial leader with successful start-up experience.
“On behalf of CyRise, I’m thrilled to introduce you to this multi-talented and geographically diverse group of startups,” says CyRise CEO Scott Handsaker.
To earn a place in the CyRise accelerator, which is backed by NTT and Deakin University, each startup must be focussed on high value problems and bring a unique vision to the market. The calibre of the teams being accepted into Cohort 6 is testament to the maturity and innovative spirit of the cybersecurity talent in the region.