- 01/15/14 15 January 2014
Built on an open threat-sharing platform, Confer protects servers, laptops and mobile devices from sophisticated cyberattacks
WALTHAM, Mass. - (January 15, 2014) - Confer, the first company to offer endpoint security via an open, threat-based, collaborative platform, today announced the company and its service offering. Confer has developed the world's first cyberthreat prevention network that secures servers, laptops and mobile devices from cyberattacks.
Built on a wirespeed, standards-based, threat-sharing platform, Confer allows companies to efficiently collect and share threat intelligence, enabling better protection while providing visibility into the behavior and intent of attackers, without requiring complex tools and deep security expertise. The company has secured $8 million in Series A funding from Matrix Partners and North Bridge Venture Partners.
Today’s enterprises face organized, financially motivated attackers, whose rapidly evolving tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) easily outpace traditional signature-based security solutions. In addition, shifts in the way we work—such as borderless networks, software as a service (SaaS) and bring your own device (BYOD) policies—mean that organizations must defend an ever-growing attack surface. These realities call for a new approach to protecting servers, laptops and mobile devices against cyberthreats. Confer takes a collaborative approach to cybersecurity that focuses on understanding the attacker across the entire Confer user community, rather than simply an individual attack. The analysis of attacker behavior makes clear the broader context of an attack, and that, in turn, enables better protection.
“To date, all of the industry’s attempts to defend servers and endpoints have overlooked their potential as one of the richest sources for understanding the behavior of threat actors,” said Tim Barrows, general partner at Matrix Partners. “Well-resourced security organizations have moved to a collaborative, threat-based model, sharing information with one another. Confer automates this threat-sharing process and allows a much broader community to benefit from this approach.”
"The fact that the vast majority of companies today do not even know when they are breached, let alone when they’re the subject of a concerted attack highlights the need for more comprehensive security visibility across the enterprise," said Jim Moran, general partner at North Bridge Venture Partners. "As our pilots with small organizations up to global multinationals showed, organizations will now have a simple, easy way to harness the power of big data analytics to prevent attacks before they occur and put the balance of power firmly back in the hands of the good guys.”
Confer’s cyberthreat prevention network is a SaaS-managed, host-based system. It prevents malware and advanced attacks via lightweight, cross-platform sensors that feed a big data analytics and sharing platform. Confer runs on Microsoft Windows, Android and Apple Macintosh-based systems, installs in less than a minute and, once installed, is managed completely from the cloud. Confer works from anywhere, continuously monitoring and protecting servers and endpoints regardless of whether they are inside or outside of the network perimeter. This strategic, threat-based approach offers users a rich, contextual understanding of attacker behavior that helps them understand who is attacking them and why.
"Attackers are efficient in designing malware that can evade traditional endpoint security controls. Defenses need to move beyond signatures to stop specialized threats," said Charles Kolodgy, research vice president at IDC. "Solutions like those offered by Confer, which IDC calls Specialized Threat Analysis and Protection (STAP), are emerging to fill the gap. STAP solutions leverage a variety of techniques to collect information around behavior, communication activity, reputation, and other factors to detect the seemingly undetectable. It's a promising approach that companies should consider to identify the unknown before it becomes a problem."
Confer is led by co-founders CEO Mark Quinlivan, Chief Technology Officer Jeff Kraemer, and Vice President of Products Paul Morville. The $8 million venture capital investment will fund further product development and expansion of the company’s marketing and sales operations.