Vectra, which uses an artificial intelligence-based system to detect cyberattacks and mobilise security systems, has raised $36m in funding.
The Series D round was led by Atlantic Bridge, with participation from the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) and Nissho Electronics Corp. Returning investors Khosla Ventures, Accel Partners, IA Ventures, AME Cloud Ventures, DAG Ventures and Wipro Ventures also joined the round, bringing Vectra’s total funding to date to $123m.
The funding comes on the back of a strong year for the startup, with 181% growth in customer subscriptions between 2016 and 2017. With the new capital on-board, the company will expand sales and marketing globally and accelerate the development of its artificial intelligence (AI)-based threat hunting platform, Cognito.
“We have been impressed by the remarkable growth of Vectra in this fast-moving cybersecurity market,” said Kevin Dillon, managing partner at Atlantic Bridge. “The increasing volume, creativity and effectiveness of cyberattacks means that enterprises must adopt AI to automate cybersecurity operations. We look forward to helping the company expand its global enterprise footprint.”
Cognito uses AI to perform non-stop, automated threat hunting with always-learning behavioral models to quickly and efficiently find hidden and unknown attackers before they do damage. The company claims the platform provides ‘full visibility’ into cyberattacker behaviors from cloud and data center workloads to user and internet-of-things devices. It prioritises the highest-risk threats so security teams can respond faster to stop in-progress attacks, averting data loss in the process.
By automating the manual, time-consuming analysis of security events, Cognito promises to condense days or weeks of work into minutes, reducing the threat investigation workload by up to 29x.
Along with the Series D funding, Vectra is also in the process of opening a new research-and-development center in Dublin, Ireland. This center will enable the company to rapidly expand its product portfolio, provide global reach to serve Fortune 500 customers, and create up to 100 jobs in Ireland over the next five years.
With cybercrime on the up, a number of startups promising to protect data have collected investment in recent months. US cybersecurity startup Counterflow AI recently raised $2.7m in seed funding to develop a network forensics platform for threat hunting. SparkCognition, an Austin, Texas-based security analytics company, also recently closed its Series B financing round on $56.5m.
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