Tessian looks toward acceleration following $65m Series C

UK security company Tessian has closed a $65m Series C funding round led by March Capital.

Also taking part in the round were existing investors Accel, Sequoia Capital, Latitude and Balderton Capital, as well as new investor Schroder Adveq. Following the Series C, Tessian has raised a total of $120m to date and is valued at $500m.

Established in 2013, Tessian uses machine learning technology to help automatically stop data breaches and security threats caused by human error. Such threats cover data exfiltration, accidental data loss, business email compromise and phishing attacks, all the while barely impacting an employees’ workflow.

To automatically detect security threats and prevent them from turning into breaches, Tessian builds ‘Behavioural Intelligence Models’ that are tailored to every employee. These models are built by examining individuals’ communication patterns and behaviours online. Tessian uses the models to inform the employee of the risk in real-time at the moment it happens.

The company claims it is currently defining a new category of security software called Human Layer Security. This form of security looks to focus more on the individual responsible or involved with the data breach, instead of simply focusing on the machine layer of a company.

Currently, the firm secures people on email and is able to prevent threats such as business email compromise, data exfiltration, accidental data loss and phishing. After deployment, Tessian claims companies see a 84% reduction in data exfiltration and phishing simulation click-through rates decline to less than 1%.

According to Tessian, it will use the funding to expand its platform’s capabilities and help companies replace their secure email gateways and legacy data loss prevention solutions, as well as expanding to other interfaces such as web, messaging and collaboration platforms. Some of the funding will also be used to bolster its employee base, with an aim of strengthening its sales team in North America.

Tessian co-founder and CEO Tim Sadler said, “In the same way we have firewalls to secure networks, and endpoint detection and response platforms to secure devices, enterprises now need advanced security technology to secure their people. People make 35,000 decisions every day; it just takes one wrong decision or one instance of human error for an employee to cause a catastrophic security breach.

“We’re tackling the biggest threat to enterprise security and are thrilled to partner with March Capital on our Series C and have them join our mission to secure the human layer.”

March Capital co-founder and managing partner Jamie Montgomery added, “Human activity – whether inadvertent or malicious – is the leading cause of data breaches. In Tessian, we found a best-in-class solution that automatically stops threats in real-time, without disrupting the normal flow of business. It is rare to hear such overwhelmingly positive feedback from CISOs and business users alike. We came to the same conclusion; Tessian is rapidly emerging as the leader in human layer security for the enterprise.”

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