Israeli cybersecurity startup Axonius, which develops a platform for managing and safeguarding connected devices for large organizations, today announced the completion of a $13 million Series A financing round. Leading the round was veteran venture capital fund Bessemer Venture Partners, with participation from previous investors YL Ventures, Vertex, WTI, and Emerge. Axionus has now raised a total of $17 million.
Axonius's platform is designed to solve visibility problems for devices connected to organizational networks. "Today, when they talk about information security projects around the world, there are a lot of products, and someone on the outside finds it hard to distinguish between them. The reason for this quantity is the major expansion in computerization in recent years, as a result of which large organizations don't even know what is connected to their network and how effective their network security strategy is," says Axonius cofounder and CEO Dean Sysman.
He promises that in contrast to other solutions, Axonius's platform is capable of providing full visibility for all the devices connected to organizational networks. "Up until now, there were two main ways of doing this. The first is getting connecting to it and routing all of the traffic on it. The second is through software installed on the devices themselves. These two methods used to work relatively hermetically, because there was only one type of device and one network. Today, however, organizations have many types of devices on which such software can't be installed, and there are also many actions taking place outside the organizational network, such as people working from home, for example."
Sysman explains that the platform that his company develops collects data from over 100 management and information security tools, such as Network Switches, Agents, SIEMs, various cloud providers like Amazon and Google, and network and security product suppliers. He adds that each of these products "speaks a different language," and Axonius is able to collect the information from over 100 such sources. In order to do this, Axonius devotes large-scale resources to learning the various "languages" spoken by each product and integrating them into the platform. With time, the company is adding more and more products to the platform, and Sysman says that it is already rare to find an organization that cannot obtain full coverage through the existing list.
The company's customers can choose all of the existing products in an organization from a list of these products; the platform connects to all of them and gathers the information passing through them. The information is gathered in various languagues from various types of sources, and Axonius consolidates them into one language and makes it possible to automize organizations' security management by providing an option for including security rules for the information it gathers and automatically enforcing those rules.
Axonius was founded in June 2017 and held its seed investment round in September. The company's three founders, Sysman, CTO Avidor Bartov, and CPO Ofri Shur, all served in IDF Intelligence Corps Unit 8200. "Ofri was my commander and I was Avidor's commander for almost all of the three years that we served. Before Axonius, I founded another cyber startup named Cymmetria, and they stayed in security services," Sysman says. "When I worked at Cymmetria, I worked with a US organization, one of the biggest, on an information security project. We started seeing alerts about devices performing actions within their organization that appeared like the work of an advanced attacker. We obtained the IP address of the attacking devices, but we couldn't find whose device it was, which device it was, and where it was. We went through all of the various information systems with no success. We sent e-mails to the employees in the organization asking them whether they know of a device with that IP address. By the time we traced the device, the attacker's IP address had changed," Sysman remembers. "I asked the information security officer in the organization how such a thing could happen, and he told me, 'It's not always like this, but today we have so many different devices that I don't know how many devices I have in the organization." I realized that this was a very basic problem in information, and I decided to solve it."
Today, Axonius has 20 employees: 15 in Israel and the rest in the US. The company plans to hire dozens more in the coming year following the current financing round in order to expedite development of its platform and acquire additional customers. Axonius serves dozens of customers, including "The New York Times," AppsFlyer, and Natera - all of them organizations with over 1,000 employees, the largest of which has 50,000 employees, according to Sysman. The company does not disclose its revenue. Following the investment, Bessemer partner Amit Karp will join Axonius's board of directors.
Founders: Dean Sysman, Ofri Shur, and Avidor Bartov
Location of offices: Tel Aviv and New York
Financing rounds: $17 million in two rounds
Investors: Bessemer Venture Partners, YL Ventures, Vertex, WTI, and Emerge
The money raised will enable Anonius to develop innovations in tis product, expand its activity, and enlarge its customer base.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on February 12, 2019
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