Mountain View, California-based Viakoo, a company that automates IoT security for enterprises, today announced it has raised $10 million in a series A round of funding led by Shasta Ventures and existing investors Stanley Black & Decker, PivotNorth Capital, and Blue Fog Capital.
As the number of IoT devices continues to increase at home and office, organizations have become savvier about keeping them secure and protecting their business-critical data. The thing is, when you have thousands of devices to manage — from different vendors and across multiple locations — at an organization level, it is very difficult to quantify and remediate vulnerabilities. CISOs have long struggled with this problem as manual remediation is often the solution, and it is not very cheap.
This is where Viakoo steps in. Founded in 2013, the company says it eliminates the need for manually managing device security with its agentless software solution called Viakoo Action. The platform discovers, monitors, and automatically remediates vulnerabilities for businesses of all sizes.
Vulnerability remediation with Viakoo
“Viakoo Action automatically gathers and analyzes IoT device data, including applications IoT devices are connected to, provides an integrated data model, and a single dashboard summary,” Viakoo CEO Bud Broomhead told VentureBeat in an email.
The platform interoperates with third-party asset discovery tools like Armis and Forescout to provide a comprehensive view of IoT devices and their compliance status. It then evaluates the firmware, password, and 802.1x/TLS certificate status for the devices and ensures organization-wide firmware updates, certificate deployment and management, and password policy enforcement for vulnerability remediation and continued operations.
The entire thing works as a one-click solution that patches different device types almost instantly and at scale, the company says on its website.
“In addition, Viakoo [also] ensures IoT devices can be repatriated to full network citizenship [replete with an audit trail] by understanding application dependencies for tightly coupled devices,” Broomhead said. U.S.-based Securithings and Phosphorus.io are also active in similar areas, although the Viakoo CEO says they only offer some capabilities of Viakoo Action.
“Viakoo has competitors that can provide a subset of our capabilities, but no competitor provides the full suite of cyber hygiene functions and repatriation. In particular, Viakoo uniquely supports both tightly coupled and loosely coupled IoT devices. Competitors only support loosely coupled,” he emphasized.
Further, Broomhead said, Viakoo’s solution can pay for itself within a few months by preventing targeted device attacks. For some perspective, just recently, IBM Security revealed that the global average cost of containing a single data breach has hit a 17-year high of $4.24 million.
Viakoo plans to deploy the fresh capital to accelerate its sales and expand into international operations. The company will also use the funding to expand its executive leadership and to put additional development resources behind Viakoo Action. However, Broomhead didn’t share how exactly the platform will evolve moving ahead.
So far, the company claims to have gained significant traction from large-scale customers including government agencies, health care, education service providers, datacenters, enterprises, and municipal services. Its total customer base stands currently at over 100.
With digitization on the rise, IoT devices will eventually become a must-have for organizations to stay relevant in the industry and to open up new business opportunities. From smart cameras keeping facilities secure to thermostats regulating office temperatures, IoT devices can perform a range of critical functions to ensure the smooth running of businesses.
IDC estimates that more than 40 billion IoT devices will be operational around the world by 2025.
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